Recently, Tens of billions of Noisy Cicadas are set to pop out of the ground in the coming weeks in a rare synchronized event that last occurred 221 years ago.

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  • The last time Brood XIX and Brood XIII emerged from underground at the same time, happened in 1803, when Thomas Jefferson was president.
  • This spring’s emergence will feature Brood XIII and Brood XIX cicadas, 
  • The former living on a 17-year cycle and mainly appearing in the Midwest, mostly in Illinois, though also in parts of Iowa, Wisconsin and Indiana.
  • While the latter follows a 13-year cycle and emerges over a broader geographic area that includes Illinois, Missouri, Louisiana, North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland.
  • This year’s emergence is expected to be exceptionally large, possibly totaling over a trillion cicadas in areas where the two groups overlap. 
  • It’s a unique event to witness both groups emerging together, A 13-year brood and a 17-year brood occasionally come out at the same time, but each specific pairing only sees their cycles align once every 221 years. 
  • While there are thousands of cicada species worldwide, periodical cicadas stand out because they spend most of their lives underground before emerging for a short period to mate. 

About Cicada

  • Cicada (family Cicadidae) family of more than 3,000 species of insects known for producing sounds. 
  • Cicadas are found in tropical and temperate regions, deserts, grasslands, and forests. 
  • All cicada species have a life cycle that consists of three stages: egg, nymph, and adult.
  • Usually residing in trees, cicadas feed on the watery sap found in xylem tissue and deposit their eggs in a split in the bark. 
  • Female adult cicadas typically lay their eggs in woody plant materials.
  • Once hatched, the young nymphs tunnel into the soil, where they extract nutrients from the roots of perennial plants.
  • Male cicadas produce loud noises by vibrating membranes.
  • Nearly 60 species of cicada are found in Europe, the Middle East, and parts of Africa. 
  • Cicadas have historical significance in folk remedies, religious practices, and as symbols of wealth, 
  • Also serve as a vital food source for humans and various other creatures. 
  • Certain Asian species of male cicadas have been kept in cages for their melodious songs.
  • Cicadas are known for their loud buzzing mating songs, which can reach up to 100 decibels. 
  • Despite their noise, cicadas are harmless to humans and don’t bite.
  • Scientific name: Cicadoidea
  • Type: Invertebrates
  • Diet: Herbivore
  • Average lifespan in the wild: Up to 17 years
  • Size: 2 to 5 cm (0.8 to 2 inches). 
  • Major species are generally easily recognized by differences in songs, behavior.

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