Chapter List for
Cricket Radio: Tuning In the Nightsinging Insects
by John Himmelman
1 - Music Beckons
Why are these bugs singing when calling attention to one's self in a world of predators may not be the best idea? (Hint - it's a great way to meet women)
2 - Why Listen?
What do you mean those crickets aren't calling for our pleasure? Should that even matter? Of course not!
3 - The Straight-winged Bearers of Swords
It's basically what their scientific names -- Orthoptera and Ensifera -- refer to. This chapter explains why and how they are what they are, and what they do to be what they be.
4 - The Katydids
Every katydid is the product of a pair of katydids that died a winter or two (or three) ago. Of course there are other things that distinguish them from other insects, like, for example ...
5 - The Crickets
Crickets sing from way up in the tops of the trees to beneath our feet in hidden chambers. It's hard to pin a general description on them since they inhabit so many fascinating forms! Some appear to be delicate buds, others, pretzel nuggets.
6 - The Might Cricket Gladiators
Put two male Japanese Burrowing Crickets in a little arena and you end up with one. They don't always play nice. Humans, being who we are, have figured out a way to make money on this. This is also a story of the author's own experience with his childhood cricket farm and his attempt to get them to pull the little carts they came with.
7 - "Give a Little Whistle": More Stories of the Ensifera and Us
We've been crossing paths with these bugs for many a millennia, so it should come as no surprise they've worked their way into our culture. From Jiminy Cricket to presaging katydids... they've been cast as our conscience and our bane.
8 - A Blade within a Sea of Grass: Adventures in Hunting Katydids and Crickets
Okay, try finding something in the grass that looks so much like grass that, well..., it might as well be! The author shares tips on finding them he learned traveling from Maine to Florida in search of katydids and crickets.
9 - The Bug People: Putting Everything in its Right Place
Everything has a name -- or at least everything we've named has a name. Those names tell us something about the insect and, at times, about the person who gave it that name. This chapter takes us from a swashbuckling pirate, back to Aristotle, and then all the way through history to two entomologists who sorted through all the information left by their forebears.
10 - Assembling Your Cricket Radio
Crickets and katydids have been kept for their song for thousands of years. That practice never seemed to make it to the New World, though. That's unfortunate. Bringing insect song into the home is something that is sure to enrich the aural tapestry. The author shares some of his favorites songsters and how to set up a cozy little place for them.
List of calls on the online Audio Resource.
It was decided that since CDs seem to be on their way out, the calls would be made available on the Internet. There are two files available. One is a blend of katydids and crickets in their natural settings that flows from one species to the next. The other is the same, but with narration giving the species and location of each singer.