Once every 17 years: The periodical cicadas arrive

In 2016, the 17-year cicadas of Brood V hatched in eastern Ohio and nearby territory. The emergence (after the cicadas spent 17 years underground, growing from tiny to an inch-and-a-half long) involves billions of the insects, relatives of aphids. In some places there are as many as 200 per square yard. They're harmless and actually beneficial. They're even edible, except near coal-fired powerplan…  (read more)

The nymphs dig themselves out of the ground

They then climb the trunk of the nearest tree

They split their shells down the back

It is a tight squeeze, but they're soft

Their wings start to extend

Some begin to crawl away from their shells

Still inflating

They develop color within the first hour or so

The inflation continues

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