What is a Cicada?
You may think what you have seen is a grasshopper---cicadas and grasshoppers are very similar. Just like the grasshopper, they will not harm humans or pets…..but you can guarantee they will damage your plants!
The cicada’s life cycle is vastly different than a grasshopper. There are certain cicadas that will appear every summer…..but there is a good portion of North American periodical cicadas that will live most of its life underground---only to come out once in 13 years….or 17 years----all depending on its brood.
Next question I’m sure you have…….what in the world is a brood? Well, brood when it is concerning the cicada means the young. Each brood of cicadas is a group of that species that will emerge all at the same time. Hundreds if not thousands of cicadas can merge per 1 acre of land…….but some populations of cicadas have been as high as 1.5 million cicadas per ONE acre. All emerging from underground at the same time.
These cicadas are found in North America. Yes you have those that appear annually. The cicada that can live up to 17 years, but spend at least 99% of its life underground. These are usually found in the Northern States and into Canada. The 13 year cicadas are found in the Southern and Midwestern States. Local Pest Control Mesa AZ
So why do they suddenly swarm out and appear? Well, when they first come out of the ground they are nymphs……or larvae. Their purpose is to mate so that the next generation can be created. The larvae will climb up into a tree to shed their nymphal skin---and also make their last transition into the adult stage. When the periodical cicada emerges from underground, it only has about 6 weeks before it will die.
The male cicada sings to attract the female. Once they have mated, the female lays up to 25 eggs at one time, into a branch in the tree. In just six weeks, the female is capable of laying more than 500 eggs. Local Pest Control Mesa AZ