The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Periodic cicadas in 2012

Catching a cicada

Looks like we're in for a round of periodic cicadas this year!  I was sorry to miss them in 2011, but it looks like the 17-year Brood 1 does live in our area, despite usually being restricted to upland parts of the Blue Ridge (about 80 miles east of us).  The red-eyed cicadas started popping up all over the farm Monday, and I snagged each new arrival to feed our chickens.  Maybe we'll eat the next ones ourselves?

(No, the cicada didn't do that to my thumbnail.  I've now learned not to roll my eyes when Mark tells me bungee cords are dangerous.  The bruise doesn't hurt any more, but it was sore for two days and did restrict my weeding for a whole week!)

Our chicken waterer is perfect for chickens from day one through old age.


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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.



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I just read up on periodic cicadas, pretty interesting how they function and how and when the different broods wake and go dormant. Closest to me is believed to be extinct in CT.
Comment by Marco Wed May 2 08:39:57 2012
That is so awesome about cicadas. They sound cool and are so plentiful, bite sized morsels for livestock and the whole family!
Comment by Maggie Wed May 2 08:51:09 2012

Marco --- I hadn't realized until reading up on them that period cicadas were an eastern U.S. thing. Aren't we lucky --- lightning bugs and periodic cicadas?!

Maggie --- Caught one for lunch this morning. Then Mark told me he was eating out. I wonder why? :-)

Comment by anna Wed May 2 13:23:04 2012
We had our emergence of 17 yr cicadas here about 5 yrs ago. Coincidentally, we had the best yr I remember for butterflies. The birds must have been busy eating the cicadas instead of the caterpillars...The math of population dynamics is fascinating. If you feed the right values into the N-K equation, you get the 17 yr repeating spike of the cicada. A simialr argument can be made about the cycles of CCD in bees.
Comment by doc Thu May 3 17:21:21 2012





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