Swarmageddon 2013

Cicada 2013The story has been all over the news for the past few months: The cicadas have begun their invasion of states along the Mid-Atlantic and East Coast and will continue through the summer. The cicadas emerge every 17 years (or every 13 years depending on the species). The cicadas emerge in the millions starting in April, when the temperature 8 inches below ground hits 64 degrees. The last “invasion” was for the 13 year cicada species in 2004. There are different broods (or groups of the cicadas) that emerge in different regions in the country. This year’s brood is called “Brood II”.  The cicadas emerge in green, woody and leafy areas. The larger urban areas, such and Manhattan, Washington DC and Baltimore seem to be spared the invasion due to the smaller amount of grassy areas. However, some areas of Southern Maryland, areas of Virginia and southeastern coastal areas are affected. ezStorage is prepared if the invasion hits any of our Maryland, Washington DC and Northern Virginia facilities. The cicada is not an attractive creature and can cause a wide variety of funny reactions from people in the affected areas. Cicadas are not dangerous. They do not bite or sting. Basically, they emerge every 13 or 17 years to mate! They come out of the ground where they have been digging tunnels and feeding on tree roots, shed their skin, start eating tree sap (especially cedar or white pine), and fly around looking for a mate. Once they mate, the females lay eggs on thin tree branches and then eventually die. The larva or eggs drop to the ground and if they aren’t eaten, they burrow in the ground. It is quite the scientific event! By July and August, the eggs are being laid and the larva forming and the adult cicadas are dying. The male cicadas make a very loud noise in order to attract females for mating. As they make the sound, their bodies vibrate, which helps to protect them from predators. When there are hundreds of thousands to millions of cicadas over a small amount of land, the sound that is created can be quite loud. At times, the sound could be louder than a jet that is flying over! The cicada invasion is great for the environment as they are food sources for birds, fish and small animals. ezStorage hopes that everyone survives Swarmageddon 2013! Just think, after this summer, there won’t be another cicada invasion until Brood X in 2018.