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Tryella graminea.JPG
Tryella graminea
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hemiptera
Family: Cicadidae
Genus: Tryella
Type species
Tryella ochra

Tryella is a genus of 14 species of cicada found in Australia and New Guinea. For many years, the members were classified in the genus Abricta. However, recent review of the genus has shown it to be a disparate group of species, and the Australian members moved to other genera. S.M. Moulds conducted a morphological analysis of the genus and found the cicadas split naturally into clades according to biogeographical region. Of the 15 Australian species, the floury baker was the earliest offshoot. Unpublished data confirmed it was quite genetically distant from the other 14 species and so it was classified in a new monotypic genus Aleeta, while the others were placed in the genus Tryella. The genus name is derived from the Ancient Greek tryelis "ladle" and relates to the ladle-shaped uncal lobes of the species in the genus.[1]

The group are commonly called bullets, the name derived from markings behind their heads, which together with their compact bodies make them resemble bullets while in flight.[2]


The type species is Tryella ochra. Within the group, cladistic morphological analysis showed T. rubra to be the earliest offshoot within the genus. The relationships between other species was not able to be clarified.[1]

Distribution and habitat[edit]

The species are found across eastern, central and northern Australia, and southwestern New Guinea, predominantly on trees, especially eucalypti.[1]


Male Tryella cicadas call during the day and dusk. Adults emerge from pupation after monsoonal rain.[1] They characteristically sit facing downwards on branches,[2] of generally less than 5 cm (2.0 in) in diameter.[1] One species, T. graminea, is found on grass.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Moulds, Maxwell Sydney (2003). "An appraisal of the cicadas of the genus Abricta Stål and allied genera (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha: Cicadidae)" (PDF). Records of the Australian Museum. 55: 245–304. doi:10.3853/j.0067-1975.55.2003.1386. 
  2. ^ a b Popple, Lindsay (2006). "Genus Tryella Moulds, 2003 (Bullets)". The cicadas of central eastern Australia. University of Queensland. Retrieved 5 June 2013.