In about a month, it will be oh so 1996 again when the seventeen-year cicadas emerge in central Virginia to continue a cycle that comes around like clock work.
Reporter Rex Springston writes in the Richmond Times-Dispatch that the ritual is the same every cycle:
The insects mate, and each female lays 400 to 600 eggs in punctures she makes at the ends of twigs. Shortly after mating, the adults die. The visit lasts four to six weeks.So for those in the target zone, get ready (see the article for the areas that will be affected). That rising-and-falling, hard-to-describe sound will soon become just about the only thing you hear while outdoors, but not to worry. They will be gone before you know it, not to return for another seventeen years.
The eggs hatch in summer. Youngsters the size of tiny rice grains drop to the ground, dig in, and start counting the years to 17.