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Brood X, Once-Every-17-Years Cicada Swarm is Coming

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If you live in the eastern United States, billions of cicadas will be coming soon to trees near you.

What We Know:

  • Beginning in late April or early May, Brood X cicadas will be emerging from their underground hideaways to feel the warmth of the sun. The natural spectacle only occurs once every 17 years in just a few states across the U.S. including New York west to Illinois and parts of northern Georgia.
  • Fairfax County Parks gave visitors a heads-up about their returning guests tweeting, “They’re coming! This is the year of the 17-year cicada in our area. There will be trillions of them in early summer. They are harmless. They are loud. They are high in protein, if you’re into that. They don’t social distance. It’s a phenomenon of nature to be enjoyed. Can’t wait!”

  • The Brood X, stands for the roman numeral 10 because it was the 10th in an arbitrary naming system designed in 1898 by entomologist Charles Lester Marlatt. NBC reports that there are seven species of North American periodical cicadas, all in the genus Magicicada. Four species live on a 13-year cycle, and three for 17 years. This year’s Brood X group contains all three 17-year species.

  • The cicadas are only around for about four weeks and frequent wooded and suburban areas with lots of trees.  Residents lucky enough to live in the area can expect to hear the cicadas’ buzzing and whistling mating calls. After mating, each female will lay hundreds of eggs in pencil-sized tree branches and the adult cicadas will die. Once the eggs hatch, cicada nymphs will fall from the trees and return underground feeding on roots until the cycle begins again.

There are roughly 3,000 to 4,000 species of cicadas around the world, but these two cycles in the eastern U.S. are the only ones to produce massive amounts of cicadas at the same time.

The post Brood X, Once-Every-17-Years Cicada Swarm is Coming appeared first on Black News Alerts.

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