Going With The Flow : With emergence of cicadas - things might get a little wet.

This spring, when the ground temperatures hits 64 degrees Fahrenheit [ 17 degrees Celsius ], trillions of cicadas will dig their way up from beneath the soil across the Southern and Midwestern United States.

In a rare so-called double emergence, two distinct cicada broods - one on a 13-year life cycle and the other on a 17-year one - will take to the trees to sing, eat and mate.

And though we may prefer not to think about it, considering their lodgings in the branches above, the cicadas will also eliminate waste in the form of urine.

Despite their size, cicadas have a powerful stream, scientists reported in an article published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The researchers adapted a fluid dynamic framework based on features like surface tension and the effects of gravity to map out how animals of different sizes might urinate.

The jets of urine that cicadas produce, the research shows, have a velocity of up to three meters [ 9.8 feet ] per second - the fastest of all animals assessed in the new work, including mammals like elephants and horses.

Cicadas drink 300 times their body weight in xylem, a nutrient-poor plant sap, each day. [ Alla Katsnelson ].


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