By Rachael Cardin

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Whether you love them or hate them, Brood X Cicadas are here for a little while longer. Once they die off, the annual cicada will be singing in the trees.

While Eric Schloemer was playing disc golf at a North Baltimore park, a cicada landed on him but he said they do not bother him. “Nope, not at all, I think gnats and things like that bother me more,” Schloemer said.

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Thousands of cicadas were buzzing around as Annie-Laurie McCarthy and her husband threw their frisbees. “They’re harmless, they won’t hurt anybody but when a giant bug comes at your face your reaction is ‘AH!,” said McCarthy.

“As a matter of fact, a lot of the mating has taken place so if you’re getting hit by a cicada as they’re buzzing around it’s likely females. They’re looking for a place to lay their eggs,” said Erik Dihle, Baltimore’s City Arborist.

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Millions came up from the ground this year as part of Brood X’s 17-year-cycle. “It’s estimated it can be a million per acre.” Once these large black cicadas start to die off, a green annual cicada will start buzzing around,” said Dihle. “There is that annual cicada. They’re different looking. They have a different pitch and they’ll start singing the second half of summertime.”

So whether you love them, like Schloemer: “They’re bugs that don’t bite they might stick on you and come in the house but they’re not spiders.” Or you can’t stand them, like McCarthy’s kids: “I don’t want to go outside right now because they keep getting dive-bombed.” The bugs will be around for a bit longer.

Here are some fun facts about the cicadas:

  • They eat juices from tree roots while they are in the ground.
  • Once they emerge they do not eat anything.
  • They only have 6-8 weeks above ground to mate and lay eggs before they die off.
  • The sound in the trees is their mating call, which will subside in the next few weeks.
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They are less active when it rains and is windy. They can be heard more on sunny and warm days. Cicadas are a food source for other animals and birds so they are an important part of the ecosystem this time of year.

Rachael Cardin