17-year cicadas - Brood VTuesday, June 14, 2016
More cicadas today! Woo! A few weeks back I shared photos of my first encounter with the 17-year cicadas that recently emerged in my little corner of Ohio. See here. I hadn't seen any more since but really wanted to find some. Mickey pointed out on instagram a few days ago that the next time these guys will be around she'd be in her forties. At first I was like "Nuh-uhhhh!" (Our birthdays are only a few days apart.) Then I realized, yep, in seventeen years we'll both be forty two. While it may not be entirely accurate that we won't see them again until then since sometimes there are stragglers that will appear up to four years early, I definitely won't be seeing these guys with this great of numbers again for a long time... even then, will I still be living in this part of US at forty two!? Either way, this is a seriously awesome event to experience.
Last week Jeff and I went on a hike with his sister, and her son. She mentioned that she wanted to see some cicadas and had seen a post on instagram by the Nature Realm that were were a lot of them emerging along their trails. So after lunch (and making the baby cry in the photobooth) we headed over to the trails to get our sweat on. My love / hate relationship with summer is going strong!
As soon as we got out of the car you could hear the cicadas! We followed the trail in a direction where the sound seemed to get louder with every step. There was a girl taking photos with iPhone of something on a leaf but as soon as we got close she scurried away and that was when we started noticing them...everywhere!
When I found all the cidadas at the cemetery there were a lot, definitely more than I've ever seen with any annual emergence, but this was different. At the cemetery it was kind of like I showed up late to the party. There weren't many adults remaining. They'd already flown off to find mates or had been eaten by predators. At the park there were just tons and tons of adults. I guess there was no sense in leaving since the area was ripe with potential mates and trees perfect for laying their eggs in.
I found myself wanting to photograph individuals because they're just sooo cool looking but really wanted to capture photos that showed how many there were! I don't know how well I'm really portraying with my words how many cicadas there are out right now but hope that my photos can help emphasize the sheer madness of it all. They were everywhere. It was so noisy. It's something similar to sirens off in the distance, except lots and lots of sirens, and very close. They were flying around every which way you looked, landing on any and every thing. I highly doubt there was a person in the park that day that didn't at some point have at least one on them.
If you're in the area, I can't recommend getting out to one of our beautiful metroparks enough. Even if you don't particularly like bugs, you have to admit their life cycle is pretty neat. If you're interested in reading more about these guys, Cicada Mania is a great resource! There is a ton of information. Finally, if you're curious when the periodical cicadas will be emerging in your area, this site has an easy to read chart.