Cicadas: Frequently Asked Questions for Homeowners
Cicadas in the Roxana, IL area are a harbinger of fall. These insects emerge in late July and early August and their noisy, evening serenade means that cooler temperatures will be arriving soon. However, how much do you really know about these winged insects? Read below about the life of a cicada.
Facts about Cicadas
- There are more than 3,000 cicada species, according to “National Geographic” magazine.
- Cicadas are found only in the eastern half of the United States, including the Roxana, IL area.
- While cicada swarms can be unsightly for a brief period of time, they aren’t a threat to property owners and can cause little to no damage.
- Cicadas live underground until it is time to emerge in the fall. Most species of cicadas return every year, but some only appear every 13 or 17 years.
- Although cicadas are sometimes called locusts in our area, they are a different species. True locusts look more like grasshoppers.
- Cicadas only harm weak trees. Cicadas are actually beneficial to healthy trees since they aerate the soil around them and trim weak and damaged limbs. If you have young or weak, ornamental trees, you may want to cover them with netting during the time the cicadas are active in your area.
- Cicadas are attracted to the sound of power tools. While female cicadas will swarm around lawnmowers, chainsaws, and other power tools, mistaking the sound for the mating call of other male cicadas, they are harmless and won’t bite you.
- The cicada’s “song” can be heard up to a half-mile away. No wonder it sounds so loud at night.
- Cicadas have a lifespan of only two to four weeks. After waiting up to 17 years to emerge from the ground, cicadas have a rather short lifespan. Expect them to clear away from your property in a month or less.
Cicadas can be somewhat overwhelming when they emerge from the ground and swarm over your property. However, this cycle is short and they cause little if any harm. They are actually beneficial to your soil and as food for squirrels, birds, and other wildlife. If the problem gets to be too much, contact your local pest control professionals.