SuperTalk Mississippi

A NewsMS Follow-Up: More About Cicadas and Why You Hear That Noise Outside

STARKVILLE, Miss.–Last week you heard about cicadas making their 13-year invasion in Mississippi. This week, more about cicadas and why they only make the noise every 13 years in the Magnolia State.

Actually, cicadas can make noise whenever they like, but every 13 years the cicadas that have been in the ground emerge and can inhabit the land by up to a million an acre. That’s why the noise is so prominent this year.

“They will mate and lay eggs in the trees, and then those eggs will emerge and the little cicada nymphs fall to the ground,” said Dr. Blake Layton, Jr., with MSU Extension Service. “They’re only out in the sun for about a month.”


He said that even though they inhabit and lay eggs in trees and eat the sap, they really don’t do much appreciable damage.

:Down here we have a 13-year cicada but a little further north they have a 17-year cicada, a very similar species, it just takes them longer to get through their lifespan.”

Layton said that only about 40 counties in Mississippi will actually have cicadas.

“They can make it very difficult to carry on a conversation this time of year.”

He said they ought to be gone by the first week in June.

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