17-Year Cicadas

The Brood X 17 year cicadas are due to swarm the area in late April or early May of 2021. Here's what you need to know:

What are 17-year, or periodical, cicadas?


Periodical cicadas are cicadas that only emerge every 13 or 17 years. This year, the Brood X 17 year cicadas will emerge. These cicadas go into the ground as nymphs and it generally takes 17 years to emerge to complete their final molt to adulthood.

When will they emerge?


Brood X will emerge in late April or early May when the temperature of the soil 8 inches beneath the ground reaches 64-68 degrees Fahrenheit.

Where will they emerge?


The largest concentrations of these cicadas are expected in the Defiance, Franklin, Greene, Hamilton, Logan, and Montgomery counties. Though the Brood X cicadas are not expected to be highly concentrated in our area, it is still possible some will emerge in Hudson, especially in park areas.

Brood X will also emerge in parts of Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington D.C. 

How many cicadas will emerge?


Tens or hundreds of thousands of cicada nymphs may emerge per acre, depending on location.

What do they look like?

Matt Berger Brood V Stragger 2.jpg

Will they be loud?


Yes. The Brood X cicada makes a loud and very distinct noise, reaching as high as 100 decibels, in a large group, which is equivalent to a motorcycle or low-flying plane. The loud, continuous sound you will hear is the song of the male cicada trying to attract females. The females respond with quick wing flicks, but you will mostly be hearing the males.

Are cicadas dangerous?

No. Cicadas cannot sting or bite.

Cicadas are attracted to power tools that make a sound similar to their song, so they may land on you while you are mowing your lawn. Cicadas do benefit the soil, trees, plants, and birds.

Will cicadas damage my trees?

The females may pose a threat to young trees or shrubs, so if you notice cicadas emerge in your area, make sure to cover your young trees with wire mesh to prevent them from laying eggs in the trees. Mature trees and shrubs should not be affected.

How to protect smaller, younger trees​
Covering vulnerable or smaller trees with mesh/netting is the best defense against the cicadas. Insecticides should not be used as they are ineffective and will harm the other creatures and the environment. For netting, use:

  • ¼ inch or smaller gaps to prevent cicadas from crawling through
  • secure the netting to the trunk because cicadas crawl up from the ground, referred​ to as the “Lollipop method"
  • Common coverings to consider:
    • Agricultural netting (row)
    • Cheesecloth
    • Polyamide
    • Polypropylene

How long do they live?


Once the 17 year cicadas emerge, they only live about six weeks. They take 17 years to mature as nymphs, and then emerge to complete their final molt into adulthood, mate, lay eggs, and die. They will mostly be gone by the fourth of July.

When is the last time they emerged?


The last time the Brood X 17 year cicadas emerged in Ohio was in 2004.

When is the next time we will see this brood of cicadas?


The Brood X cicadas will emerge again in 2038.

Resources


Akron Beacon Journal Article - 17-year cicadas are due to surface soon, prominently in western Ohio
Cicadamania.com
Brood X - University of Connecticut