Where are the cicadas?

There were numerous news stories here in Pittsburgh about how the 17-year cicadas would be appearing in massive numbers, emerging some time between May 14 and May 28. It’s June 13 and I’ve yet to see or hear a single one. Did they appear on time in other locations? If so, why aren’t they here?

They hit D.C. and southern Maryland in force; there was a day near the peak where I couldn’t drive down a stretch of interstate without constantly having ten or twelve in my immediate line of sight. However, in parts of northern Virginia, because so much of the area has been developed within the last 17 years, there were practically none. All of the earth they had been hiding under was turned over, exposed to air, sifted and smashed by bulldozers, and re-buried in the same hole, some deeper and some shallower. I suspect this is part of the reason that Pittsburgh didn’t have them.

Two other things: one, Pittsburgh has rocky soil that is probably not ideal for their growth, so your local population may be smaller. Two, their emergence from the ground is triggered by soil temperature, so if Pittsburgh hasn’t had several 80 degree days already, then you may not have awakened them just yet.

They were out in full force in southern PA (in the Catoctins - is that south?) last week.

I happen to live in PA and work in MD. They were out so thick around Baltimore MD that I have about a thousand of the buggers smashed against my window and grill of my car (and they don’t come off very easily either), but I haven’t seen a single one up where I live. A co-worker also lives in PA, a little further east than me (towards York) and they don’t have any there either, but they do have some in an area a little north of him. We were supposed to get them here too. At first they were saying that they would just be a little late, then they finally announced that if we didn’t have them by now we wouldn’t be getting them.

Olentzero ate them all. :wink:

We don’t have too many here now, but we were figuratively swimming in them a week or two ago. Still plenty of carcasses, though.

Great - I sure won’t miss them. Thanks.

It’s very regionalized. In central Jersey by the shore, not a sight or sound of them. When I went biking along the Raritan-Delaware canal and approached Princeton, it sounded like the martians were landing with a full flotilla (the sound was sci-fi creepy – not natural sounding at all (which could just be because it’s unfamiliar (for example, the cricket’s sound in mid-August is just as loud, but it sounds ‘natural’ probably because I’m used to it))).

So, huge difference in population just 30 miles apart.


The Bronx here, on the mainland, northern border next to Yonkers.

I live across the street from Van Cortlandt Park, the remnants of the old estate of that family; they gave it to the city in 1888 and the old farmland hasn’t been touched since, except for some fires and stuff.

But not a cicada. We had a heat wave last week with 3-4 days of 90 and above, will that do it?

In my lifetime, I daresay that no story has been so over-studied and run into the ground by NPR as the cicada story.

I’m on the York/Adams border, engineer_comp_geek, and haven’t seen any in the immediate area, either.

Are you coming to the Dopefest next Saturday?

Come to Princeton!

Even now, as you drive down the town streets, your ears are treated to an unusual whine that sounds like a whole fleet of ambulances heard from a few miles away. This has been going on for the past month.

They don’t buzz like the traditional summar cicada; they have a more high pitched song.

At church, the kids kept asking me to help them catch cicadas. They perch on bushes and the like and they don’t scare easily, so it is no trick to help a child get a jarful of them. I haven’t seen what the children do with their cicada jars – perhaps they take them to their mothers to prepare a tasty stew?

It’s actually kind of weird to stand there in the sun, chatting with the other parents about how old we will be when the cicadas return. Not a pleasant subject.

Hmmmm… I seem to have totally overlooked moriah’s post.

Don’t I wish. After all that searching, I only found two pre-teneral cicadas, and they were too high to reach.

Next time, I’m going to rural Ohio.

Pittsburgh is part, too of the Brood V cicadas, which last emerged in 1999.

These ones almost drove my brother nuts, but you’ll be off the hook until 2016.

Here in Queens, NY, I haven’t seen a single one.

The Indianapolis Star reported their arrival a week or two ago. I’m 35 miles northeast from there, and we don’t have them yet.

None (so far) on the lower Eastern Shore of Maryland . Cross the Bay Bridge and they are as thick as can be. Apparently the Chesapeake Bay stopped them.

Some in Baltimore City; legions in the surrounding suburbs. I finally got a chance to say those words I always dreamed of.

“Pardon me, sir. You have a cicada on your head.”

Here in New Jersey, right outside NYC, not a one. We’ve had a lot of rain, and I’m hoping they all drowned.

I have thousands in my yard. Anyone wants one just let me know. Get your orders in quick though, they are dropping dead fast.

I think hearing the crunching sound of walking on a sidewalk covered in insect corpses isn’t too bad if you’ve experienced walking through a cloud of clumsy flying insects the week before.