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Archive for May 24th, 2016

It is not the end of days, but it’s close! I can hear them descending down the mountain. Yes Brood V is just around the corner! The emergence started May 7th in Southern Ohio, and more of the emergence was spotted…heard in West Virginia and here in Pennsylvania on May 11. Yesterday Denyce and I heard them High on the mountains. It won’t be long, perhaps a day or two before the army of Magicicada Cassini, Magicicada septendicim and Magiciada septendecula will emerge on our front lawn.

Every 17 years the brood of cicadas emerges from the ground. The conditions have to be perfect. The soil 8″ below the ground reaches a perfect 64 degrees Fahrenheit and then it takes a light warm rain to trigger the rising. This past weekend we had two days of just such a rain.     

They rise for one reason and one reason only. To Mate! They emerge from the ground and climb the trees where they sing their songs of passion. They sing loud, proud and strong! A group of males can sing their chorus at 100db’s. 

Both males and females can mate several times laying about 20 eggs per mating, averaging 600 eggs. The mating lasts about four weeks After six weeks the eggs hatch drop to the ground and dig down where they wait for another 17 years. 
If you are still wondering what all the fuss is about, we have 11.5 acres the average emergence is 1.5 million cicadas per acre. It is bound to be a very long, loud month.

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