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The Ultimate Cicada Quiz
by Staff
That deafening sound is not signaling the end of the world -- its just a swarm of cicadas about to begin partying! What are these noisy creatures and why can't they just be quiet? Take our quiz and find out when and why cicadas insist on being so loud.

What order are cicadas classified in?

  • Hemiptera
  • Plecoptera
  • Thysanura

What is the main characteristic of the Hemiptera order?

  • They are poor flyers.
  • They are capable of generating high decibel sound
  • They have piercing and sucking mouth parts.

How many species of cicada are there?

  • 100
  • 200
  • 300

What is the wingspan of the largest cicadas?

  • five cm (two inches)
  • 10 cm (four inches)
  • 15 cm (six inches)

What is the cicada's flying ability?

  • They are poor flyers.
  • They are very agile flyers.
  • They are very fast flyers.

How many wings do cicadas have?

  • two
  • four
  • six

How many pairs of legs does the cicada have?

  • one
  • two
  • three

What are the three tiny eyes on top of a cicada's head called?

  • ocelli
  • nymphs
  • labium

What ability do a cicada's compound eyes give it?

  • the ability to see long distances
  • the ability to see in the dark
  • wide peripheral vision

What covers the cicada's mouth parts?

  • the ovarium
  • the labium
  • the nymphus

Which sex of cicada is responsible for their deafening bellow?

  • both sexes
  • females
  • males

What decibel level can some cicadas reach?

  • 80 decibels
  • 100 decibels
  • 120 decibels

Through which organs do cicadas belt out their mating call?

  • the tymbals
  • the cymbals
  • the ringbals

Which body part do the tympana function as?

  • reproductive organs
  • ears
  • nose

What is an added advantage of having the ability to produce such loud noise?

  • It doesn't only attract mates, it also attracts prey.
  • It allows them to maintain territorial integrity.
  • It scares away potential predators.

What is a female cicada's reproductive organ called?

  • ovipositor
  • ovum
  • ovarium

For how long do newly hatched cicadas live underground?

  • six months
  • a year
  • 17 years

What are baby cicadas called?

  • nymphs
  • whymphs
  • larva

What do cicada nymphs eat while underground?

  • beetle larva
  • plant sap
  • soil

Do cicadas bite?

  • They bite during mating season.
  • They bite only when threatened.
  • They are harmless.