Maybe you’re not on the Eastern seaboard — but the live cicada cam is there to show you what you’re missing.
The live cicada cam marks the first time the appearance of the normally hibernating insects coincides with the existence of the social web. In decades past, people were forced to call relatives to complain about the freaky, noisy bugs that only show up once every seventeen years.
National Geographicexplains that, while some cicadas are annual, the seventeen year variety (seen on the live cicada cam) are rarer and spur more interest:
“Cicadas are also famous for their penchant for disappearing entirely for many years, only to reappear in force at a regular interval. There are some 3,000 cicada species, but only some share this behavior (the 17-year cicada is an example). Others are called annuals because, although individuals have multi-year lifecycles, some adults appear every year. The dog day cicada, for example, emerges each year in mid-summer.”
Thanks to the magic of technology, the live cicada cam on Animal Planet Live can be viewed from your desktop, laptop, or smartphone, and the network explains:
“Like a scene from a horror flick, these creepy crawlers emerge from ground every 17 years to invade the mid-Atlantic. We found these Brood II Cicadas taking over Washington, D.C.”
Animal Planet continues:
“During the next few weeks, they will be emerging from their lengthy slumber to molt and mate. Their offspring will then burrow into the ground for 17 more years. From North Carolina to Pennsylvania, little children and grown-ups alike will recoil in horror from the Cicada Invasion.”
The live cicada cam, embedded below, sparked interest after Sunday night’s Swarm Chasers and Cicada Invaders 2013 — and it features the creepy bugs in a Washington, D.C.-like terrarium.