Cicadas are quickly becoming one of the biggest stories of the year as trillions of the winged bugs emerge from a 17-year hibernation. One television reporter got an up-close look at one of the insects as it climbed his suit coat on live television.
Cameras were rolling as CNN congressional correspondent Manu Raju was preparing to go live from Washington, D.C. and a large cicada was seen climbing up the front of his suit jacket. Raju didn’t notice the bug until it made its way to the back of his neck. The reporter shuddered as he threw the cicada to the ground and in disgust said, “Where are all these cicadas coming from?”
The Brood X cicadas, one of the largest and most dense populations of cicadas in the world, awoke from their 17-year snooze early in May and have been seen in 15 states from New Jersey to Georgia. Their emergence is part of a fascinating life cycle that is unlike that of any other insect. As the cicadas emerge, the noise they produce can’t be ignored as their humming reaches 105 decibals, rivaling that of a lawnmower. The noise is part of the mating ritual of the male cicadas and their attempt to find a partner. The females lay their eggs on tree branches and when the nymphs hatch, they fall to the ground and burrow into the soil where they will remain for 17 years as they feed on fluids sucked from the roots of plants and trees.
The event lasts four to six weeks until all the participants die and fall to the forest floor and the 17-year cycle starts over again.
Learn more about these fascinating creatures in the video below.