biology zoology blog benno meyer sound of beetles

Sounds of the Beetles

Their variety is quite amazing

In many countries, the feeling of summer is related to the sound the cicadas make. Some call it “noise”, others describe it as “singing”. The entomologists refer to it as clicking sounds created by tymbal membranes on each side of the abdomen that are drawn together by muscles a few hundred times per second in a way rather similar to when one clicks the slightly raised lid of a tin inward and lets it bounce back to its original position. What’s interesting is that all the different cicada species anywhere in the world use the same method to produce their sounds. Crickets chirp (or sing) by rubbing one wing against the other and, once again, crickets all over the world use the same technique. Grasshoppers, no matter where use their hindlegs to ‘scratch’ their wings and create their distinct sounds in this way. It seems that once an ideal way to make sound has evolved it becomes the standard method and won’t change. With beetles it is different. Their sounds are softer, but produced in many more different ways. —>—>