Ladies & Gentlemen! Brood X!
May 7, 2004 8:54 AM   Subscribe

The Brood is Back. No, not that Brood. This brood.
posted by grabbingsand (14 comments total)
...a little travelling music please, professor!
posted by Smart Dalek at 9:24 AM on May 7, 2004

Actually, I thought you meant this brood. Skreeeeee!
posted by Scoo at 9:26 AM on May 7, 2004

man, i hope some MeFite in the midwest gets a ton of pictures. this is gonna be awesome.
posted by taumeson at 9:50 AM on May 7, 2004

The Brood (Cronenberg edition)
posted by Nelson at 9:56 AM on May 7, 2004

Thank goodness I wasn't the only one who thought of the X-Men brood when I saw that...
posted by BackwardsHatClub at 10:58 AM on May 7, 2004

I award you a million bonus points for the X-Men reference. (And yeah, BackwardsHat, you weren't alone.)
posted by logovisual at 11:18 AM on May 7, 2004

And oh my God -- they're called "Brood X"? Can you imagine a harder name? We're so doomed. They eat human flesh, right? Are they vulnerable to fire, or sonic weapons? Please say yes.
posted by logovisual at 11:31 AM on May 7, 2004

taumeson - I live in northern Virginia. I was a young teenager when the last 17-year cicada emerged. There was pretty much nothing else going on for about two weeks other than these bugs (although it felt like a whole summer). For every individual insect, there will be a discarded exoskeleton at some point, virtually doubling the number of bugs (because the shell looks EXACTLY like the the bug, only hollow). The shells remain clinging to trees (or whatever). These damn things are anywhere from an inch to two inches long, just the body itself... formidable.

As a kid, I can remember filling 5-gallon buckets full of them (no idea why). One time I was "chased" from my backyard by a swarm of cicadas... the kind of swarm you would see in a movie. Insane. It scared me. I mean if they were gnats, a million bugs wouldn't be all that shocking. But these things are so big, you can see a swarm from looong way off. We used to run around with tennis rackets and smack them from the sky... heavy enough to launch 20, 30 feet.

They fly into windows with a healthy *thump. I can remember washing off the driveway and sidewalks with a hose, sweeping rolls and rolls of bugs and shell into the street. Hitting them with your car is "fun" too. If you have big hair, an afro, etc... they WILL get in your hair. Sometimes you won't know it until uncomfortably later.

I'm going camping next weekend. Hopefully I won't be the victim of bad timing. I'll see what I can do about pictures.
posted by Witty at 11:35 AM on May 7, 2004

I sense an exoskeleton collection coming!
posted by JeffK at 11:38 AM on May 7, 2004

Just like these.
We definitely collected them as kids... temporarily of course. They're very delicate and as light as a feather (and harmless, haha).
posted by Witty at 11:42 AM on May 7, 2004

I live in one of the areas these are supposed to be in. One thing I have not been able to find on any of the sites I've read is if these things make any kind of noise before they emerge from the ground that animals can hear. The reason I ask is that for the past couple weeks my new 5-month old puppy seems to be extremely interested in the ground, acting like he hears something beneath the surface. It's frustrating at times getting him to do his business because of it. It is kind of funny watching him hop around from spot to spot and bury his nose in the ground with his ears perked up. My 12-year old dog doesn't seem to hear anything (or care if she does), but I would presume her hearing not to be as good anymore, not to mention she has objective tinnitus in her left ear (since she was a pup).
posted by AstroGuy at 12:46 PM on May 7, 2004

AstroGuy, I think your puppy is probably hearing the Morlocks.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 2:06 PM on May 7, 2004

I used to fill buckets with the exoskeletons too, Witty. I'd go out in my backyard and there'd be a hundred of them clinging to the wooden fence. I'd look down the cracks in their backs through their "eyes".

My sister and a friend of hers used to go downtown with a handful of them and hang them on people's backs as they walked behind them.

I love cicadas. They make Summer urgent.
posted by interrobang at 2:39 PM on May 7, 2004

I live in Delaware, and I can't wait for the cicadas to come out. I didn't live in the right part of the country the last time this brood came out--or rather, it looks like they came out in Michigan in '87, but only right along the border with Ohio and we lived north of Pontiac at the time.
posted by eilatan at 3:12 PM on May 7, 2004

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