close
close

Here you can find 17-year-old crickets now emerging in Wisconsin

play

Director of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Insect Diagnostics Lab PJ Liesch said Friday that he received the first summer reports of Brood XIII 17-year-old crickets showing up in Wisconsin.

The reports came from the Lake Geneva area of ​​Walworth County. So far, these are the only reports of 17-year-old crickets in Wisconsin this year, but many, a lot of More are expected to appear in the state’s southern counties over the next two weeks, Liesch said.

This summer marks the first time since 2007 that the 17-year-old crickets have appeared. Although a number of cicada species emerge each year, Brood XIIIs spend most of their lives underground as juveniles feeding on tree roots and avoiding predators. After emerging, adult crickets only live about four to six weeks. This means that while they may cause a crunchy, chirping nuisance in cicada hotspots across the country this summer, people will only have to deal with them for about two months, Liesch said.

Generally, 17-year-old cicadas do not emerge until the soil temperature reaches 64 degrees. Temperatures in Lake Geneva are still “slightly below” that threshold, Liesch said, and only about 100 crickets have been reported there so far. But as temperatures rise, the area — which is expected to have the highest 17-year cicada numbers in the state — could soon be overrun by the insects.

“With the temperatures this week and the rain showers today and tomorrow, that will really help,” said Liesch. “Once emergence is in full swing, we will likely see tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, or even millions of these emerge in relatively small areas on Lake Geneva and other places around the state.”

More crickets are expected to appear here in the coming weeks.

Where will 17-year cicadas show up in Wisconsin?

The Lake Geneva area will be the best place in Wisconsin to see the 17-year-old cicadas because of their established reputation there, especially along the north side of the lake, Liesch wrote in his blog.

Other cicada hotspots include areas in Green County and Rock County, including Janesville and Beloit. Additionally, the insects are expected to be common in the Driftless Area counties of southwestern Wisconsin – Iowa, Sauk, Richland, Crawford and Grant.

Liesch’s blog mentioned Prairie du Chien and the Spring Green area as hot spots. Several towns along the Wisconsin River have also historically had strong cicada activity, he said, and parts of Dane County southwest of the village of Mazomanie could also see the insects.

It is important to remember that crickets will not be uniform throughout these provinces. Liesch describes their distribution as highly concentrated, more like “push pins on the map.”

Will 17-year cicadas emerge in Milwaukee by 2024?

Brood XIII crickets have not been documented in Milwaukee County for “several decades” and are not expected to appear there this summer, Liesch said.

“They used to be in more areas, but land use changes are likely changing their habitat over time. If you think about the long life cycles of these insects, they spend most of their lives underground in the soil like juveniles feeding on trees.” If those trees are disturbed at any point – they are cut down to make an agricultural field, a parking lot or a shopping center – those populations will likely become extinct.”

Liesch said this is why cicada populations have declined in densely populated, developed areas such as Milwaukee and Waukesha counties.

More: When and how long will 17-year cicadas be present in Wisconsin in the summer of 2024?

More: Soon there will be tons of cicadas showing up in Wisconsin. Here’s how to protect your plants and gardens