Billions of Cicadas Are Coming, Creating Quite a Buzz in Central New York
The cicadas are coming. After 17 years of being underground, billions of Brood X cicadas will fill the air with their buzzing mating calls and they've already arrived in Central New York.
It's already getting loud at Delta Lake State Park and it's only going to get louder as the Brood X cicadas have begun emerging from their underground burrows. They’ll join annual cicadas, which come out of the ground in small numbers every year.
How loud will it get? The cicadas mating calls can reach up to 100 decibels, which is louder than lawn mowers, city traffic or a jackhammer. Prolonged exposure to sound that loud can lead to hearing loss, so don't forget ear protection if you are going to be out in an area where cicadas are prominent.
Take a listen to how loud the cicadas are already at Delta Lake State Park.
The Brood X cicadas have been beneath the ground, feeding on sap from the roots of plants, since 2004. Although the bugs have started to emerge, the vast majority won't come out until sometime in late May and early June for two to four weeks. The bugs will lay eggs in trees and then the adult cicadas will die. The eggs will hatch in 4 to 6 weeks in over a dozen states, including New York. The babies will fall from the trees and head back underground until the year 2038.
Don't worry. Cicadas won’t hurt you. They don’t sting and they’re not venomous. The main damage cicadas inflict is to the holes the bugs drill into slender tree branches, where they then lay their eggs. You can protect younger or vulnerable trees, by covering them with netting to keep the cicadas away
The only thing we have to worry about is the noise. Because it's about to get really loud.