You may not remember the last time you heard the shrill screeching of cicadas, but they will be back very soon to remind you! This particular batch of 17 year cicadas are expected to emerge in the next couple of weeks and the cacophony they are expected to create will be ‘spectacular’ according to many entomologists who enjoy studying such creatures. Perhaps for you, the average home or business owner in St. Louis, the noise will not be as spectacular.
What are cicadas? These are insects that spend a great deal of their lives underground. The cicadas that will be out soon were born about 17 years ago up in the trees and shortly after birth, the juvenile cicadas fell to the ground and burrowed into the soil. Once in the ground, they fed off the juices of plant roots. Now finally 17 years later, they are ready for mating, so they have begun to dig their way up out of the ground. Once they emerge from the soil, you should be able to hear their shrill mating call as they climb trees and search for their mating partner.
So what kind of noise are we talking about here? Check out this YouTube video. Amazingly this chorus of cicadas can reach up to 90 or more decibels! That’s as loud as a lawnmower! And even though cicadas aren’t known for causing too much trouble, they really can become a noise nuisance, especially when more than 40,000 cicadas are singing in every tree!
So what can you do about cicadas in St. Louis? Unfortunately, not a whole lot can be done about these insects. The chorus of mating cicadas doesn’t last for very long- a few weeks at most. When the whole thing is done and dusted, you may end up seeing thousands of dead cicadas on the ground that have successfully mated. If you find that the buzzing is driving you nuts, it might be a good plan to invest in some high-quality noise cancelling headphones or ear plugs- but as for treatment, it isn’t really necessary.
If you’ve got more questions about the incessant cicada cacophony you are hearing, we’d be happy to help you learn more! Give our St. Louis pest control professionals a call to learn more about cicadas or to discuss our residential pest control services available in St. Louis and throughout our service area. And try not to let the mating cicadas bother you too much- just remember it only happens every 17 years!