World’s largest cicada brood begins hatching in the South
n enormous brood of cicadas that covers parts of 16 states is beginning to wake from its 13-year slumber underground.
The inch-long insects, which are sometimes mistakenly called 17-year locusts, have been reported hatching in South Carolina, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina and Arkansas. They will appear farther north as soil temperatures reach 64 degrees.
“There are billions of them in the trees,” Greta Beekhuis says, speaking by phone from her porch in Pittsboro, N.C. The sound of the cicadas is clearly audible over the line. “When I drove from my house to the grocery store, I ran over thousands of them. They’re everywhere. The air is just thick with them.”