The 17-Year Cicadas are On the Way

May 9, 2013

It’s all the buzz, or soon will be.

People living on the East Coast including here in Georgia will soon be seeing and hearing billions of cicadas.

They’ve been feeding on roots underground for the past 17 years.

A small number have started to emerge in some eastern states.

Clay Talton, with the Elbert County Cooperative Extension, explains what the cicadas are best known for.

“After maturing males begin what cicadas may be best known for, their songs”, said Talton. “These songs are usually finished around July.”

The cicadas have distinct black bodies, buggy red eyes, and distinct orange veined wings.

While not having the most inviting look, cicadas for the most part are harmless.

“Cicadas do not sting or bite and they are not harmful to crops”, said Talton. “However, they can cause damage to young trees by feed on them too much and laying too many eggs into the young trees’ twigs.”

The entire brood is expected to be fully active before the end of the month, but it is not known how big a number we will see in northeast Georgia at this point.