Thursday, June 9, 2011

Dead Cicadas Make Great Art!

After the Great Southern Brood Cicada invasion of 2011, Designer Joel Anderson (creator of the Cicada Invasion Collection) was inspired by all the dead cicadas around his pool, so he made a few compositions and photographed them just before his dog walked through and messed up the art!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

NEW Cicada Pasta Cooking Video!

Well, we finally got around to cooking some cicadas (just to see what all the foodies have been raving about!) Cicadas are actually a tasty protein to include in pasta sauces! Check out the video:

Our recipe included:
• 20 cicadas
• red wine
• olive oil
• butter
• toasted sesame seeds
• tomatoes
• mushrooms
• stuffed pasta
• garlic salt
• Tony’s Cajun seasoning

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Cicadas Cause Technical Dificulties...

These creatures are harmless—except for their stupidity. We’ve heard of near-accidents due to hapless bugs buzzing into cars and freaking out drivers. But this is a new one: Vanderbilt Unversity is reporting problems with their cooling systems due to cicadas flying into and dying in the cooling towers! See the article...

In recent weeks, Life Flight crews have had to battle the cicadas that swarm the aircraft during take off and landing. Lis Henley is an in-flight nurse for LifeFlight. She told Nashville's News 2 the bugs immediately flock to the helicopters.

"It's just interesting how quickly they come when they hear the noise," Henley said, adding, "The noise, it's not the lighting, so day or nighttime, it's the noise they're attracted to."
Vandy’s Life Flight helicopters are also attracting cicadas. See the article...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

12 Step Program for Cicadas

There is a huge tree in front of our design firm. This is ground zero for the Poston and 29th Ave North Brood XIX (unit 116 Alpha Delta Gama.)

Creative Director Joel Anderson went out with his camera to document the 12 step program of cicadas trying to get their lives back on track after spending 13 years in dark and dirty places. After following one cicada who we will call Sammy, here is what we discovered about the 12-step cicada program:

Step 1: Admit that you are a creepy nymph and you need to change.
Step 2: Come out of your shell.
Step 3: Well... you get the picture.

Anyway, it was very interesting to see Sammy leave his former life of red-eyed sap-sucking mud-grubbing grovelling and blossom into a successful adult, ready to sing, fly, mate and die. (Above, we only show 9 of the 12 steps because he started doing some things we would rather not post on this blog!) He still has red eyes, but at least Sammy has finished the 12-step program—and with the help of billions of his reformed friends, he will never return to his former ways.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Cicadas are here!!

Over the weekend we were finally visited by our subterranean friends!  They have emerged to impose their temporary dominion, and we personally want to welcome our new red-eyed overlords. We've even rented out our reception desk to one in particular, Sammy the cicada. We've tried to cater to his needs, bringing him fresh branches and females. "Females!" he demands, and females we search for.

Here Sammy is in his new digs. You can't tell from this angle, but he's mooning the camera.

Here is Sammy's friend, Nancy the nymph. She's practicing for when she'll be able to fly into peoples' eyes.

Sammy attacked Andy for bringing him the wrong branches. We think he was just playing around, but the look in his eyes said we’d be wise to obey his every command.

Obviously, we can't express how excited we all are presently. Andy has to finish this post now, Sammy needs to use the computer.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Anderson Design Group on Channel 2!


Check it! Joel Anderson (ADG founder & owner) laid out his cicada strategy yesterday on the local 4:30 news!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Hide Your Kids, Hide Your Wife!

Who would have thought that cicadas watch Youtube? This cicada was recently caught on camera using mind-control to feed lines to a young man who the brood had singled out as the perfect spokesperson for their message of hysteria. Hide your kids, hide your wife...

Cicada News Story on Channel 4...

Looking for more facts about the impending cicada outbreak? Check out this informative story which recently aired on Channel 4 News in Nashville, TN:

Monday, May 2, 2011

First Official Cicada Sighting In Nashville!

Last night, a group of immature cicadas broke ranks and emerged ahead of schedule. They apparently wanted to be in the garner as much publicity as possible before billions of their cousins emerged and overshadowed them. The group of cicadas (who called themselves the Red-Eyed-Five) emerged at the top of Music Row in Nashville, TN, striking provocative poses on one of the city’s most famous sculptures. Birds swiftly swooped down on the youngsters, leaving nothing but droppings behind. Ignoring the fact that there is safety in numbers, these foolish pranksters managed to get their 15 seconds of fame before their untimely demise.

Another Cicada Sighting!

Yesterday in Pakistan, an American Cicada infiltrated Osama Bin Laden’s compound and led U.S. Navy Seals to their target by singing at full volume for a full 6 minutes before he was squashed by Al Qaeda operatives. The brave cicada (#2,765,983,001 from the Great Southern Brood XIX Music City Battalion) sacrificed himself for his country, unselfishly foregoing a chance to mate with over 2,000 females next week in Nashville. His fellow comrades will fly in formation and sing a special song in his honor some time in mid-May.

First Confirmed Sighting of a Brood XIX Cicada!

Last week, we had our first confirmed sighting of a Brood XIX cicada. The red-eyed invader took a wrong turn when tunneling up from the ground in Nashville, TN and somehow ended up in London, England. A royal photographer snapped this shot just before the elusive bug disappeared. Experts are baffled, but they assure the public that the cicada was either looking for love, or just wanted to sing at a wedding.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

If You Can’t Beat ’Em, Eat ’em! (Cicada Recipes)

Most experts agree that cicadas are a rich source of protein with about the same amount per pound as red meat. Cicadas are also said to be full of vitamins and minerals, low in fat, and they have zero carbs. So why aren’t more people eating them? Maybe because the thought of eating a bug makes you dry-heave!? But if you think about it, shrimp and crawfish are pretty much cicadas without wings. In fact, crawfish, lobster, crabs, shrimp, and insects are all part of the same biological phylum of arthropods.

Brave (or crazy folks) say cicadas are crispy and crunchy, with a nutty, almondlike, flavor. Iroquois indians have a long history of eating cicadas and considered them to be a delicacy.

The best time to eat cicadas is just after the nymphs break open their skin and before the exoskeleton turns hard. They are best harvested in the cool of the morning when the insects are more sluggish. Experienced gatherers focus on the adult females, each of which can contain up to 600 nutritious eggs.
Males tend to have hollow abdomens in order to help them make the cicada sound, and are better as a crunchy snack, like popcorn.

Cicadas can be cooked in a large frying pan in a way similar to popcorn. The taste is similar to the "crispy edges of the egg white of a fried egg." A popular way to prepare cicadas is to saute them in butter with crushed garlic and basil. Before you start your cooking you need to remove all the hard parts: wings, legs and head. These parts don’t contain much of the meat either but may be very sharp, so its best to get rid of them.

Cicadas can also be dry-roasted on a stick like a marshmallow over a fire. Other popular cicada recipes include Cicada Stir-Fry and Cicada Dumplings. Deep fried cicadas taste best when eaten with hot mustard or cocktail sauce. (Any sauce used for lobster should also work well to garnish cicadas.) Cicadas can also be roasted, which tends to give them a "nutty", or almondlike, flavor.
Cicada Tacos:

Ingredients: two tablespoons butter or peanut oil, one and a half pound of cicadas, one teaspoon of chili powder, one tomato, finely chopped, one onion, finely chopped, one and a half table spoon ground pepper, one and a half table spoon cumin, three table spoon taco seasoning mix, one handful cilantro, chopped, Taco shells, Sour cream, Shredded cheddar cheese, Shredded lettuce.

Cooking instructions:
1. Heat the butter or oil in a frying pan and fry the cicadas for 10 minutes, or until cooked through.
2. Remove from pan and roughly chop into 1/4-inch cubes/ Place back in pan.
3. Add the chopped onions, chilies and tomato, season with salt, and fry for another 5 minutes on medium-low heat.
4. Sprinkle with ground pepper, cumin and oregano to taste.
5. Serve in taco shells and garnish with cilantro, sour cream, lettuce and cheddar cheese. 

Click here for another recipe from

Monday, April 25, 2011

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

FAQs About Cicadas

You may be starting to hear folks talk about the impending cicada invasion. Here are some Frequently Asked Questions about periodic cicadas...

Q: How long will the cicadas be here?
A: About 4-6 weeks after they first start emerging. Most individual cicadas live only a few weeks, but since they emerge over a period of two weeks or so the whole event lasts longer. The serious noise will get going about a week and half after you first notice them and will last about two weeks more. (This is about the time when some people pack up and move to another country.) This chart shows the emerging schedule of the last great outbreak in the USA.

Q: Can these cicadas hurt me?
A: No. Cicadas don't bite or sting defensively, and they are not toxic or poisonous. But they can make you do a hilarious freak-out dance if they crawl up your neck.

Q: How loud are periodical cicadas?
A: Some of the louder choruses reach 90+ decibels as perceived while standing under the tree. Individual periodical cicadas are actually not that loud, but get a group together singing one of their favorite songs, and it rivals an AC/DC concert.

Q: Why do I hear cicadas every year?
A: There are 150 or so species of cicada in the U.S. (including species of Okanagana, Diceroprocta, Cicadetta, Neocicada, Cacama, Okanagodes, Magicicada, etc.). Only the seven Magicicada species have synchronized development and periodical emergences (meaning that all individuals in a population are always the same age). The rest of the species (the so-called annual cicadas) have unsynchronized development, so some individuals mature in every year and we hear them every summer. Most of the cicadas in Nashville are very immature, judging by their behavior.

Q: Will cicadas chew up my plants?
A: No, cicadas do not chew -- they have no chewing mouthparts, and they feed (drink, really) more like aphids. Adult and nymphal cicadas feed on plant sap called xylem - the watery part of the plant sap - which they suck up through their proboscis (feeding tube). Feeding by periodical cicadas does not seem to affect trees and shrubs very much because they take only a small fraction of the water passing through. This outbreak, known as the Great Southern Brood has been known to chew tobacco. They prefer Skoal Bandit.

Q: Will cicadas hurt my flowers?
A: Probably not, cicadas have little interest in these plants (except if any are woody). You may see teneral (newly emerged) cicadas sitting on such plants, or emerging on them, but they will soon move up into the trees. When they invade a tree, the females will cut slits into small branches to deposit eggs. These small branches will probably die, but the tree will survive (unless you use a flame thrower to silence the 20,000+ cicadas in each tree.)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

When Cicadas Invade Your Yard

Some time in late April or early May when the soil temperature reaches 67 degrees, a red-eyed swarm of swarm of cicadas will creep from underground, climb trees, emerge from their shells and begin flying and singing at the top of their lungs in an effort to attract a mate. This happens every 13 years—and when it does, the air over much of Middle Tennessee is filled with their ear-splitting mating calls.    

Often confused with locusts, scientists call them Periodical Cicadas, Brood XIX.  These insects are not poisonous.  They don't transmit disease.  They cannot sting and adult cicadas live for only four to five weeks. The adults do not feed on foliage, but the females can cause damage to young trees.

Tips for Tree and Plant Protection:
The female cicada has a knife-like ovipositor that she uses to slit twigs before she lays eggs inside the slits.  Once hatched the young cicadas fall and burrow underground.  Each female can lay a total of 400 to 600 eggs and the multiple punctures pose a threat to young trees by causing twig tips to wilt and die.  Apple, pear, dogwood, oak and hickory are the favorite hosts, but you can see the puncture marks on many tree species. When feasible, small, valuable shrubs and trees may be covered with a loose woven or spun fabric such as cheesecloth or floating row cover for protection.  This covering should be secured at the trunk to prevent infiltration.  Delay pruning young trees until after cicada emergence so damaged branches can be removed.  If pruning is done before eggs hatch, burn the damaged twigs.


The apocalyptic swarm may be unnerving, but it is nothing to worry about. Most trees and shrubs did just fine back in 1998 during the last outbreak of Brood XIX cicadas. Birds, squirrels, spiders, snakes & family pets find the bugs to be very tasty. The bugs that don’t get eaten create piles of rich compost that nourish plants. It’s one of those circle of life things that you just have to endure once every 13 years!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Very Cool (and Informative!) Cicada Videos

Sir David Attenborough's documentary segment on the 17 year cicada. Though the brood that's hitting the mid-south this year is a 13 year group, the principles are all the same.

Another really cool cicada documentary using time-lapse photography.

This vid clearly illustrates the charming chorus we will be putting up with for about a month.