“Two types of mirid bug engage in roaring duels, possibly to establish dominance or attract females, but how they make the noise is unknown.”
via New Scientist:
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They are rather diminutive to be kings of the jungle, but two species of mirid bug make sounds similar to the roars of big cats. These calls have never before been heard in insects, and we’re not sure why, or how, the insects produce the eerie calls.
The roars are too weak to be heard by humans without a bit of help. But Valerio Mazzoni of the Edmund Mach Foundation in Italy and his team made them audible by amplifying them using a device called a laser vibrometer. The device detects the minute vibrations that the bugs produce on the leaves on which they live.
“When you listen to these sounds through headphones you’d think you were next to a tiger or lion,” Mazzoni.