Cicadas Return After 17 years

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Last week our blog post revealed Cicadas Return After 17 years! The Times Union reports, the awakening occurs just once every 17 years and will happen this spring along the Hudson River, announced by an eerie metallic buzz filling the air.

Once cicadas emerge, adult cicadas can be identified with their orange and block bodies, veined wings, blood-red eyes and 1 ½ inches long according to Timothy McCabe, chief entomologist at the State Museum in Albany. Male cicadas sing using a hardened diaphragm called a tymbal to produce a whirring or buzzing sound audible up to a quarter-mile away. The females are drawn to the male cicada sound as a way to commence mating.

Cicadas have among the longest life spans in the insect world and are found only in the U.S., from the Great Plains to the Eastern Seaboard. Cicadas spend the first 16 years of existence underground as nymphs, sucking fluid from tree roots. As the weather warms during the spring of the 17th year (Spring 2013), nymphs head for the surface, molt into an adult and quest to reproduce. The insects that emerge each year are called a brood, and this brood last emerged in 1996.

The Times Union reports, cicadas used to emerge as far north as Washington County, and as far west as Schenectady County. Now, they insects are not found much further north than southern Albany County.

Cicadas return typically once the soil 8 inches below the surface gets to 64 degrees Fahrenheit. Learn how to identify cicadas before they emerge and other cicada facts. If cicadas return to the Albany NY area, be sure to contact a licensed professional to address the issue. Tomorrow we will discuss how cicadas affect trees. Stay tuned! Thomas Pest Services is proud to be a local, family owned pest management company in Albany NY with 3rd Generation Experience can TRUST! Contact us for a free home evaluation!


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