Parts Of D.C. Area Could Be Spared From Cicada Invasion

5:10 PM, May 2, 2013   |    comments
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FAIRFAX CO. Va. (WUSA9) -- They've been maturing below our feet for the last 17 years. They're getting ready for their grand entrance this month above ground.

But according to entomologists and other urban forestry experts, there are places in our area that could be spared from the sights and sounds of Brood II, the red-eyed orange winged periodic cicadas.

"Cicadas are well known for their singing buzzing sound."

It may be singing to Fairfax County Urban Forester Joan Martinez Allen but to others?

Monica says, "I think it sounds like something is wrong with your TV."

Laura says, "It's like an overwhelming chrrrrr." 

But not to worry, says Allen, but the invasion of Brood II may not be that bad.

"It will be spotty at best. We may not notice them at all."

VA Tech entomologists predict the insects will start appearing next week. The concentration is in central and southern Virginia.
But only pockets of them will emerge from Northern Va. to New York, with concentrations in  Leesburg and Western, Maryland.

Allen says, "They don't bite, sting, they're not poisonous. They're defenseless."
Allen says don't worry about your flowers and plants. 
She does say you may have to watch out for your young trees because the female cicadas will lay 4-500 eggs in tree limbs.


"When the eggs hatch it splits the whole branch and you may see dead branches."

Entomologist say this year's infestation won't be anywhere close to the outbreak of Brood X, in our are, when they emerge in 2021. 

The cicadas will live for 4-6 weeks above ground and die.
Fairfax County does not recommend using insecticides because that will kill other beneficial insects.


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