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Q: Phantom Water Drops ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Phantom Water Drops
Category: Science > Earth Sciences
Asked by: glslezak-ga
List Price: $2.00
Posted: 19 Jun 2006 10:23 PDT
Expires: 19 Jul 2006 10:23 PDT
Question ID: 739372
My question is about those drops of water you feel fall on yourself
outside.  It could be a sunny evening and I always feel drops of water
fall on me.  I used to think it was condensation from air
conditioners. Then someone told me it was waste from bugs or birds. 
Or could it be water from trees?


Subject: Re: Phantom Water Drops
Answered By: eiffel-ga on 19 Jun 2006 12:20 PDT
Rated:4 out of 5 stars
Hi glslezak-ga,

I assume you are asking about very tiny drops of water, considerably
smaller than raindrops. If there are trees in the vicinity, these are
likely to be insect waste.

During a heavy cicada season I have walked under a tree laden with
cicadas and felt an almost constant drizzle of what must have been
cicada waste. They eat the leaves, absorb the nutrients, and excrete
what's left.

Much more common though are droplets of honeydew, the waste of aphids:

  "Aphids also produce a sticky material called honeydew.
   Park your car underneath an aphid-infested tree and it
   will be covered with tiny droplets of honeydew."

  "The main problem with aphids is the sweet, sticky
   honeydew they excrete, which then drips onto foliage
   and anything under the plant or tree."

  "The air above the alder thickets was filled with
   myriads of the aphids in the winges stage, while the
   trunks and leaves of the alders were covered with a
   syrupy coating of honeydew (a sweet liquid which
   those insects excrete profusely), and tiny droplets
   of this material fell in a saccharine shower..."

I trust this provides the information you are seeking.


Google Search Strategy:

aphids OR insects OR cicadas "tiny drops OR droplets"
glslezak-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars

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