Those who keep track of such things tell us that the 13-year cicadas
are due to return in a few days, and to be hungry after a 13-year
nap. I moved here (Tennessee) less than a year ago.
You are only going to live to see a few of them.
Here in NJ I've seen 3 so far. 2 or 3 to go if I'm lucky.
Is it a food crop you're concerned about?
They aren't hungry, they've been eating underground.
They emerge to make a LOT of noise and mate.
I'm not sure about crops but they climb up trees, shed their
exoskeleton, grow wings and fly around. They mate then cut a slit
in tree branches, lay their eggs and die.
Do your best to enjoy a remarkable event. I will never forget the
Memorial Day I spent in Turkey Run State Park during a periodic
cicada emergence. The sound...!
They don't come out to eat. They've been dining underground all
those years. They emerge with only one thing one their mind: sex.
They can cause some damage to tree when the eggs are deposited,
but it is more like an overall tip pruning and usually no serious harm
I happen to like cicadas. Very cool, if noisy, insects.
On Tue, 10 May 2011 08:18:23 -0400, Pat Kiewicz wrote:
Very cool indeed, and if you have a camera with macro you should be able
to get some neat pictures, or even movies if you have a tripod and
suitable lighting. When they climb from the ground they head for the
nearest tree and emerge at seemingly random locations, some near the
ground and some high up, starting around dusk but mostly after dark.
With a lot coming out at once there are always some emerging near eye
level where you can watch or photograph easily, and they are easy to find
by searching tree trunks with a flashlight.
It takes about an hour from the initial split of the nymph exoskeleton to
full extension of the wings, then several more hours before the wings
harden enough so they can fly, and during this time they cannot move away
from you, your camera, or predators.
I have seen hundreds of them climbing my two big elm trees the past two
years, and a few every year for the previous ten, so the 13 year timing
seems to be only approximate here in Pennsylvania.
I had one climb me and attempt to emerge on my head while I was taking
pictures, and quite a few climb the barn, so their discrimination of what
is a tree is not quite perfect either :-).
I still have a cicada noise maker toy that we bring out each year to put on the
Christmas tree. still works, very cool. I like cicadas too.
Somewhere between zone 5 and 6 tucked along the shore of Lake Michigan
on the council grounds of the Fox, Mascouten, Potawatomi, and Winnebago
I remember experiencing a plague of cicadas when I was a kid in
Hudson, Ohio...my junior high was in the older, long established
section of town and as we walked down the sidewalks in that area, it
was "crunch, crunch, crunch" for a few days - they were just
everywhere - and they were big. Their droning sound was unremitting
and was punctuated by periodic hysterical squeals from girls who were
unlucky enough to have one fall into their hair. My Mom finally bit
the bullet and just drove us to school for a few days...In retrospect
- they were really fascinating.
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