The long-anticipated magical appearance of Brood X (10) of the 17-year periodical cicadas (Magicicadaspp.) has not yet gotten underway in Ohio. The clock is still ticking for the cicadas to take the stage en masse. My “cicada dig” yesterday in Butler County revealed cicada nymphs that had not yet developed the internal coloring indicating they are about to spring from the soil.
This does not mean we won’t soon see periodical cicadas emerging in urban heat islands. However, much of the geographical range of Brood X in Ohio covers rural areas such as the location where I excavated the nymphs yesterday.
This is the third of what is anticipated to be a series of BYGL Alerts dedicated to Brood X happenings in Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky. You can read the other Alerts by clicking these hotlinks:
However, it's important to use appropriate protective materials and proper application methods; improper tree wrapping can cause more damage than cicadas! Also, homeowners should assess whether or not their location places their landscape trees at risk.
I provided some “do’s and don’ts” with tree wrapping in my last BYGL Alert on Brood X. Below are pictures showing a recommended wrapping method using netting as well as an improper method using row crop cover fabric. Unfortunately, we’re getting reports from homeowners that netting and other proper wrapping material are becoming difficult to find.
Help Science: Join the Cicada Safari
There remain many unanswered questions about Brood X including the exact geographical distribution. Cicada populations are often highly localized with large concentrations commonly near areas with no cicadas. Future predictions depend heavily on where we do and don’t see periodical cicadas this spring.
Gene Kritsky worked with the Center for IT Engagement at Mount St. Joseph to develop an easy-to-use smartphone mapping app titledCicada Safari. Thefreeapp can be download from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
All you need to do is snap a picture then hit the submit button. Once your image is confirmed as being a periodical cicada (and not your cat), the latitude and longitude for your observation are added to the cicada map.
I strongly urge that you download the app and use it to help us learn more about Brood X. Become part of the Cicada Safari!
Click on the hotlink below to access the Cicada Safari website