Periodical cicada brood XIII coming this year to Illinois and the southwest corner of Michigan

Editor’s note: This article is from the archives of the MSU Crop Advisory Team Alerts. Check the label of any pesticide referenced to ensure your use is included.  

Recently, many media stories have come out about brood XIII of the periodical cicada. Unfortunately, the media stories do not always give accurate information about where to expect the cicadas. Brood XIII, like most of the periodical cicadas, have a 17-year life cycle. 2007 is the next scheduled appearance of this brood. In the last emergence of brood XIII, cicadas were abundant in some woodlots in northern Illinois, southern Wisconsin, eastern Iowa, the northern edge of Indiana and in two or three counties in southwest Michigan (see Figure of distribution).

The only places in Michigan that are likely to see cicada activity this year are in Berrien, Cass and St. Joseph counties, although a few isolated hot spots may be found in adjoining counties. The cicadas are harmless, other than the high-pitched siren-like whining that they make. The only concern is the twig damage that occurs when the females use their saw-like ovipositor to insert eggs inside of twigs. In heavy infestations, some trees can lose an entire outer layer of small branches to this injury. Valuable trees, especially young ones, can be protected with an insecticide spray in early June to prevent oviposition damage. (View photos)

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