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May 8, 2012

Look out for Brood II, Brood V and Brood XIX Stragglers

When is a 2012 Magicicada not a Brood I cicada? When it’s a straggler.

A straggler is a periodical cicada that emerges in a year before or after the year they are supposed to emerge. Typically a straggler will emerge one or four years before, or one year after the year they should have emerged. Stragglers from Broods II (due 2013), Brood V (due 2016) and Brood XIX (backin 2011) are or will emerge this year in limited numbers.

Brood II is set to emerge next year in most of central Virginia (as well as CT, MD, NC, NJ, NY, PA), Brood V will emerge in four years in Virginia and West Virginia (as well as OH, PA), and Brood XIX emerged last year in a few areas of Virginia (as well as AL, AR, GA, IL, IN, KY, MO, MS, NC, OK, SC, TN).

Stragglers present a challenge for people tracking the Brood I emergence because Brood II, Brood V and Brood XIX stragglers will emerge in the same states as Brood I cicadas. Brood II and Brood V overlap Brood I in some places.

Here is a comparison of the I,II & V Broods. The black dots represent where the cicadas have emerged historically.

2012 periodical cicada stragglers

Here’s a map of Brood XIX in case you are curious.

Visit for more information on this phenomena, and report your cicada sightings while you’re there. Credit goes to the’s Facebook post that reminded me of the stragglers.


  1. Lee Watkins says:

    I live on the edge of Patterson Park in Baltimore City, which is something like Central Park in NYC, in terms of scale and nature. The presence of cicadas in the park has been quite noticeable. Very Noisy, until the chill this week seems to have dampened the noise. There was a dead one on my rowhouse stoop just last week. I take it these are Brood II stragglers?

    The city has been on a tree-planting bonanza the last couple years. Red maples have been a favorite. Most of the trees in my neighborhood are new. I am worried the 2013 Brood II will damage them. I was wondering if wrapping the trees in cheesecloth would protect them. Is there any particular procedure that would prove effective?

    1. Dan says:

      Cheese cloth, tree netting, bug tape placed around the trunks, you can spray them off with a hose, you can make a lot of noise (bag pipes) which will make them move away so they can hear each other… or you can pick the females off like grapes. They’re easy to grab. Pick them up by hand and place them on an older tree.

  2. Colin in DC says:

    Brood II – 1 year early stragglers active in DC, MD and northern VA. Very audible. Have only had 3 specimens and 5 shell casings in hand.

  3. Greg says:

    The Cicads in Kingsport TN are not stragglers. This is full brood that was expected.

    1. Dan says:

      Well, there are no documented Brood I cicadas in TN, so either they’re stragglers, or no one has documented them before.

  4. Lisa Abukamail says:

    Athens, Ohio, home to brood V… We are experiencing an emergence (at least in my front yard) that began Around May 1. 10-year-old daughter is fascinated, but also quite put out because she can’t climb her tree for all of the exoskeletons! She is diligently plucking them off and putting them in a container, which 8-year-old daughter took in for show and tell (teacher may never forgive me).

  5. Tracy says:

    Kingsport TN Cicadas have been active for a couple of weeks.. Sullivan County. They are very noisy I find.. I see they are most noisy during the day or heat.. Is there a point that they will soon be quieter? This isn’t going to be happening all summer is it? I remember when we had them a few years ago but it didn’t seem to be this noisy.

    1. Dan says:

      Ah, one year stragglers from Brood XIX I believe. They’ll be quiet in a month.

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