Cicadas wreak havoc in D.C.
Even the president isn’t immune
Brood X cicadas were seemingly everywhere across the eastern U.S. last month.
Their nymphal exoskeletons littered city grounds like the leaves of the trees they would come to lay their eggs in.
There were Brood X cookies, chocolate cicadas, multi-course cicada meals – it was a periodical cicada palooza and scientists expected trillions out in full force.
However, the 17-year cicadas’ more than 100-decibel song no longer fills the air in Maryland, Virginia or Tennessee.
FILE – A cicada peers over a ledge in Chapel Hill, N.C., on May 11, 2011. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome, File)
After a two-to-four-week jaunt, the adult cicadas die following intercourse.
The curious “live fast, die young” creatures may nearly be gone, but their offspring remains nestled in branches until they hatch next month to burrow back into the Earth and begin the 17-year cycle all over again.
The next generation will surface in 2038, though researchers say the cicadas may come to emerge more frequently due to alterations in the insects’ life cycles as the planet’s climate continues to warm.
Cicadas are triggered when the soil’s temperature reaches 64 degrees, often by a warm rain.
“This is one of the craziest life cycles of any creature on the planet,” University of Maryland entomologist Michael Raupp explained in May.
The curious red-eyed bugs will certainly be remembered.
Although cicadas are not dangerous to humans, the insects were the cause of a few disturbances.
A county in Georgia said that residents had been calling 911 over their songs, with reports of “alarms” sounding in the area.
In Ohio, the Cincinnati Police Department reported that a young man had crashed his car after being hit in the face by a cicada that flew through an open window.
Brood X also impacted air travel, delaying the White House press plane’s takeoff from Washington’s Dulles International Airport to the United Kingdom for hours ahead of the G-7 Summit.
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President Joe Biden was even spotted swatting at a cicada on the tarmac.
“Watch out for the cicadas,” he told the press ahead of takeoff last month. “I just got one — got me.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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