These crunchy, creepy insects with their haunting screech apparently are quite flavorful.
Employees of an ice cream store in the college town of Columbia plucked these prehistoric looking creatures from the trunks of trees, riped off their wings, boiled them, ground them up, then coated them with brown sugar and added this crackly crunch mixture into a base of buttery-flavored ice cream. The first batch made sold out within an hour.
Would anyone try this ?!?
I've had a fear of these things ever since I was a kid. When the sun begins to set in the hot, steamy months of late summer they start up in chorus from the branches of trees -- a mournful mating-call howl. The family dog would always catch one of these dumb, fumbling things when it fell on the ground and bring it inside. The bug flying and flailing about letting off a screeching, piercing, unsettling sound. My mother would chase it with a broom trying to sweep it through the back door.
These chitinous insects climb out of their skin and leave the outer shell perched on the side of a tree. In my youth, my brother would always pry the skin carcass off and try to scratch my arm with their prickly, gross legs.
(images from: How Stuff Works, Cletus Lee's Flicker Acct, and What's That Bug.)