5 Cicada Facts for Kids
Cicada insects are long living insects. They can live up to 17 years which is unheard of in the insect world. There are two different kinds of Cicadas. There is the Dog Day Cicadas which are dark green and spend 7 years living under ground before they emerge in July or August.
There are then the Periodical Cicadas which are black or brown with red eyes that emerge after 17 years living underground in June. There are more cicadas born every year so it is different generations that emerge. There are over 2000 types of Cicadas broken up among the two main families.
Over one million Cicadas can live on one acre of land.
They live above ground after they emerge for only about 5 weeks. The male makes shrill noises that they use to attract their mate. The sound is made by two drum like membranes on their chest that they vibrate.
The female lays 200-300 eggs in branch or hollowed out section of the tree. The nymphs emerge and fall to the ground where they burrow into the ground at the base of the tree. They attach themselves to the tree roots where they suck the sap of the tree for the entire time they are below ground
When it is time for them to emerge they crawl up the tree and attach themselves and eventually emerge as adults.
Where Can You Find Them?
These insects live on every continent of the world except Antarctica. In some countries cicadas are eaten. In other countries they are held in high regard and looked at as a symbol of rebirth.
Can They Fly?
Cicadas can fly but they are not so good at it. They often bump into things when they are flying around. They are often eaten by rodents and birds because they are not much of a challenge to catch. They are large and kind of sluggish so they do not move very quickly. Maybe they are sluggish because they are not necessarily use to being on land only below it.
They have two prominent eyes and three smaller eyes on the tops of their heads that are single lens eyes.
Do They Sting?
Cicadas may look scary because of their large size and the loud noise they make but they are no threat to humans. They cannot bite and they do not have a stinger.