A rare event is taking place this spring. Trillions of Brood 10 cicadas have just spent 17 years underground. But in May, they will emerge . They will create a buzz as loud as a lawn mower. And by June or July, they will be gone. Their offspring will do the same thing in another 17 years.
Cicadas come out to mate. The buzz you hear is their mating call. It’s the males that make all the noise. Michael Raupp studies insects at the University of Maryland, College Park. He says there will be plenty of drama. “There’s going to be birth. There’s going to be death. There’s going to be predation . There’s going to be romance. There are going to be songs,” he told TIME for Kids.RICHARD ELLIS—GETTY IMAGES
The cicadas will emerge when soil temperatures reach 64°F. The insects crawl out of the ground and fly up into the trees. If you’re standing outside, one might climb up your arm. But cicadas aren’t dangerous—they don’t bite or sting. “This unique event happens nowhere else on the planet,” Raupp says. “Just go out and enjoy these things.”