I'm not totally sure if this is going to work, but today's post is attempting to be all singing and all dancing...(well 'singing' and buzzing).
We do get birdsong here in Phoenix, but for nearly a month you haven't been able to hear it for some lovely little insects called Cicadas.
Now possibly everyone in the world knows about cicadas except for me, but in case you'd never heard of them (or heard them) either, here's what we have in our trees in the back garden yard at the moment:
No, you dingbats, we DON'T grow money in our trees here, the American quarter and the British tuppence are just there to show you the size of a cicada (and isn't it nice of me working in both currencies for you all!).
I think the correct name for them is apache or desert cicadas, though round here I've heard them called rain bugs and even locusts by some 'Zonies. (They're not actually anything to do with locusts, but you know the Americans - they call that game they play here where you pick up the ball 'football', so what do they know! *runs for cover from things being thrown at her*).
Unlike lots of the other creepy crawlies we have here, cicadas aren't harmful to humans - they're just blooming noisy. The male cicada is the loudest insect know to man.
Supposedly gardeners love them as about 2 weeks after they arrive and start 'singing' (an intense buzzing and clicking), the monsoon rains come.
Our ones live for about 2 years (though over in Mississippi they have 17 year cicadas!) though most of this time is spent underground feeding on tree and perennial roots. Then around the 2nd week in July usually (although they were late this year) they crawl out of the ground, up into the trees and the males start shouting 'come and get it' to the females (well not literally shouting that, because that would be very scary if they could talk... *shudders*). Anyway if you want to know more about them, you can here and here.
Right, fingers crossed, here's where I try to get all technical and I'm not totally sure if this will work yet - but this is what they sound like, along with what I sound like and the other annually returning sound of summer in Phoenix - the mechanical droning of the air-conditioning units:
Hey it worked! Now I know that works I might try loading some more audio and/or video in the future so you can get a feel what it's like living out here in Arizona ("it's hot, but it's a dry heat"...but then so's an oven).
And if you're interested, here's a pic of the garden yard path I was recording that audio along:
In the meantime, excuse me whilst I tune my computer into a channel I used to listen to on my DAB radio back in the UK, www.birdsongradio.com