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  • Writer's pictureTina Huggins

Walking with the Cicadas!

I walk almost every day…this is the year of the Cicadas…I still walk…it is just not as tranquil. One should prepared for a walk with the Cicadas….an iPod is a must to drown out the annoying non-stop mating sound of the male insect. (I think we woman should count our blessings that men don’t use that approach with us)…wearing a hat can be handy as the Cicadas are flying around looking for that perfect mate…they don’t usually land on you…but you might feel one hit your arm or brush you hair…if you have hair 🙂

Once they emerge from the ground they shed so crunching those shells is unavoidable…just goes with the territory…often over a million emerge! While walking you will notice Cicada shells and live Cicadas everywhere…light poles…trees…sidewalks and wall…no spot is left untouched…the good news…they will be gone in 4-6 weeks….and the enjoyment of peace and quiet will return to to daily walks for at least another 13 years!

So what do we know about these insects….

The Cicada infestation is live and buzzing around the state of Tennessee! These buzzing and annoying insects will infiltration 16 states the next several years….We know the basics…they hatch….emerge often by the millions…annoy for about 4-6 weeks…and finally die (thank goodness). For those of you who don’t live in AL, AR, GA, IN, IL, KY, LA, MD, MO, MS, NC, OK, SC, TN, TX, VA might wonder what this plight….

These flying plant sucking insects emerge in cycles…lay eggs…and damage trees. The cycle for some Cicadas is 13-17 years….most of their life is underground and we all consider that to be a blessing! Once they emerge from the ground…climb a tree…a telephone pole…or a wall to shed their skin…they take flight to mate. The sound that is so piercing shrill is the male mating song….which obviously works very well from all the cicadas in my neighborhood this year. The male bites the dust after doing his job and 

the female cuts slits in twigs of a tree to lay about 24 eggs (she can deposit up to 600 eggs) No wonder there are millions flying around!…thus one will see many young trees covered with nets for protection. When the eggs hatch a nymph (immature form of an insect) falls to the ground and burrows into the earth slowly growing over the years to emerge later and once again annoy the heck out of us!

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