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Found throughout most of Aotearoa New Zealand
Chorus cicada

Chorus cicada

Māori name: kihikihi wawa, matua kihikihi, ngengeti

English name: Chorus cicada

Scientific name: Amphipsalta zealandica (Boisduval)

Order: Hemiptera
Family: Cicadidae

  • is found throughout most of Aotearoa / New Zealand;
  • typically lives in tall forest (or where tall forest used to be);
  • males "sing" in unison;
  • when numerous males sing together they can produce a deafening, strident uproar, which suddenly changes to synchronised "clicks" as the wings are clapped against the tree trunk;
  • females lay eggs in herringbone-patterned slots in branches;
  • nymphs hatch out the following spring and drop down to the ground;
  • nymphs spend several years underground, sucking sap from tree roots;
  • a nymph emerges from a wide burrow when ready to become an adult, climbs a tree trunk, and splits its skin down the back. The adult pulls itself out, expands its wings, and flies off.