Time for the Plague Again! It’s a Cicada Year for Maryland

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If sometime in mid-April or May you hear an ominous, ambient humming and notice that the ground looks like it’s swarming with insects, never fear — it is! After 17 years, it’s time again for Maryland’s visitation by Brood II Cicadas, everyone’s favorite infestation.

According to Business Insider, the insects arrive so rarely (and so regularly) because they spend most of their lives underground; the swarm we see is them living out their final moments as they produce the next generation, which will then burrow underground and hibernate for 16 more years. Because of their rarity, they have few natural predators. But they also don’t sting, bite, or transmit disease.

Another important thing to keep in mind:  The warmer the weather, the sooner the cicadas will emerge. Business Insider links to two useful websites:  the cicada wedding planner (full of useful tips like “bagpipes are effective at drowning out cicadas”) and the build-your-own cicada tracker. Or we could all just stay inside for the next two months.

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  1. Sorry- am I missing something? Don’t Cicadas come every 17 years to Maryland? I know they were here in 1970, 1987, 2004, and the next 17 years will be 2021. Help me here!

    • Your right Margaret, last time was in 2004. I’m in the pest industry and the “big” swarm wont be until 2021, even tho we still do have other species of cicadas that swarm every year.

    • Apparently it’s because there are different species of them and they are all in a different schedule.

    • the article that the Baltimore Sun put out stated that depending on the brood, cicadas emerge every 17 or 13 years

    • Yea I had my son in 2004 and that was their 17 year mark…. We should still have 5 years!!!!!

    • This is probably a different grouping and if their bad thru won’t be anything close to what we had in 2004 and can expect in 2021

  2. Brood X is the one that we get REALLY hammered by. We saw that brood last in 2004 and will see them again in 2021.

  3. I don’t really care what brood they are – they all look, sound, and finally smell (meh!) the same! But it is an amazing phenomenon!

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