Closeup of a cicada in backyard of Collins Georgia homeowner caught unprepared - get tips on how to prepare for cicada season here

If you’ve lived in the Southeastern United States for a while, you’re undoubtedly familiar with “cicada song”—a high-pitched rattling that’s loud enough to drown out almost everything else. But this summer is going to be worse. Typically, we deal only with annual cicada populations. However, this year we’re expecting the emergence of a significant periodical brood known as Brood XIX or the Great Southern Brood.

The presence of this brood means it’s going to get very loud, and you’re going to see cicadas everywhere. So, what can you do? In this blog, we’ll discuss how to prepare for cicadas this year, including things you can do around the house to lessen their impact, and ways to mentally prepare yourself for the toll they can take.

How to Prepare for Cicada Season

The emergence of cicadas is a natural event that cannot be prevented. However, to mitigate their impact, there are several precautions you can take.

Here’s your handy checklist for getting ready for cicada season:

  1. Protect Young Trees and Plants: It’s difficult to predict which plants cicadas might target, but if you have young or immature plants or trees, consider taking preventative measures. Wrapping the trunks with foil or netting can discourage cicadas. If you notice cicadas on a favorite plant, you can gently remove them with water from a hose or by hand.
  2. Repair Holes in Screens and Walls: Cicadas typically remain outside, but their large numbers make indoor infiltration a possibility. By sealing potential entry points, you can keep them outside where they belong.
  3. Cover Your Pool: Cicadas are clumsy and may fall into your pool and drown. Covering your pool during peak cicada activity can prevent what can easily turn into a huge mess.
  4. Move Patio Furniture: For similar reasons why you cover your pool, consider relocating your outdoor furniture or covering it during the cicada season.
  5. Do Yard Work Early or Late: Cicadas are most active during the day. For quieter outdoor activities, schedule your yard work early in the morning or late in the evening.
  6. Prepare for All-Out Noise and Odor: Cicadas can be extremely loud, reaching up to 100 decibels in densely populated areas. Earplugs may be necessary if you find the noise bothersome. Additionally, the stink from dead cicadas can be unpleasant, so be ready for that.

Do Cicadas Cause Damage?

Cicadas make small slits in branches and bark where they lay eggs. Mature trees can typically withstand this type of damage, but young trees are vulnerable. Nymphs may also weaken young trees by feeding on their roots, but it takes a lot of cicadas to cause a significant amount of damage.

Fortunately, cicadas do not harm houses or other structural elements. Their lifecycle is focused on feeding and breeding—they do not waste time causing unnecessary destruction.

Is There Anything About Cicadas That Can Hurt Children or Pets?

Cicadas do not bite or sting and are generally harmless to pets and children, though their presence may be unsettling.

Is There a Difference Between Annual Cicadas and Periodical Cicadas?

The easiest way to tell annual cicadas from periodical cicadas is the coloring. Annual cicadas have black or brown eyes with dark greenish veins. Periodical cicadas have red eyes and red-orange veins.

Does Rocket Pest Control Treat for Cicadas?

We don’t treat for cicadas. The unusual nature of the cicada cycle means it’s unnecessary to treat for them. Here’s why: 

  • They die off too quickly – What if we could guarantee that all of your cicadas will be gone in about five weeks? We don’t have to make that guarantee because nature does it for us. From the time you see your first specimen, it takes about four to six weeks before they’re gone completely. With that inevitable outcome, there’s little reason to try to treat them.
  • There are too many of them – Even if you got rid of all of the cicadas on your property, they would likely be replaced by many more cicadas from nearby. Cicadas will go where the food is, and if they want to eat on your property, there’s not much you can do to stop them.
  • Cicadas are an important part of local ecology – When cicadas emerge after decades underground, they provide a substantial boon for local species that prey on insects. Additionally, when cicadas die off and decompose, they provide valuable nutrients to the soil. 

Got Questions About Cicadas? Call Rocket Today

Due to the nature of cicadas, they’re not a pest that we (or any other pest control company) treats, but that doesn’t mean we can’t answer your questions. If you have any questions about these unusual marvels of nature, we’d be happy to answer them for you. As the trusted pest control and lawn care company of the Southeast US, we can get you the information you need so you can make informed decisions.

For pest control, lawn care, and moisture control services, call us today and get a free estimate.

Preparing for Cicadas in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Florida

South Carolina
Spartanburg | Greenville | Seneca | Greer | Anderson | Blue Ridge | Easley | Camden | Chapin | Columbia | Irmo | Lexington | Sumter | Anderson | Lexington | Clemson
North Carolina
Hendersonville | Charlotte | Concord | Gastonia | Huntersville | Kannapolis | Mooresville | Indian Trail | Monroe | Cornelius | Matthews

Loganville | Marietta | Snellville | Stockbridge Florida
Boca Raton | Boynton Beach | Coral Springs | Delray Beach | Deerfield Beach | Ft. Lauderdale | Lake Worth | Pembroke Pines | Pompano Beach | West Palm Beach

Recommended Posts