The First Cicadas Have Been Spotted On The Upper West Side

They’re here!

The first 17-year cicadas from the group known as Brood II were spotted on the Upper West Side on Wednesday, according to the “Swarmageddon” map created by WNYC’s RadioLab

A handful of the grasshopper-looking bugs were seen on West 108th Street near Central Park, DNAinfo’s Elizabeth Barber reports. 

This is only the beginning.   

The insects, which spend nearly two decades underground, emerge by the millions every 17 years to mate and reproduce. The adult cicadas will die after about six weeks, subsequently sprinkling the ground with their crunchy, lifeless bodies. Meanwhile, the eggs will hatch, drop to the ground, and bury under the soil to begin the 17-year cycle all over again.  

Manhattan is not a hot spot for cicadas — the bugs will be more populous in suburban areas where there are lots of trees and shrubs for them to feed on — but they are expected to make a relatively strong showing in Central Park and Staten Island

Cicadas are not a threat to humans — they do not bite — but they can be extremely loud. The males make a loud buzzing noise to attract females.  

Weary New Yorkers can report and track cicadas using RadioLab’s map, embedded below:

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