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Periodical cicadas are a genus of cicadas that emerge every 13 or 17 years. My data looks at Brood X, a group of 17-year periodical cicadas. The distribution of Brood X ranges from New York to North Georgia and the Midwest to the East Coast. Due to the time between emergences, there are not many previous studies. The Georgia population has not been studied as much as other states due to its small distribution. Cicadas are also models for understanding evolution and ecology. Therefore, each emergence must be studied.

The most well-known parasite of periodical cicadas is the fungus Massospora cicadina. However, the most numerous organism I found was Sarcophagidae larvae. The sample used for this research consists of 176 dead cicadas collected between April and June 2021. I processed the cicadas by first recording any missing or damaged body parts. I then dissected them, noted any predators and preserved them. Other families/orders were present in the cicadas or their container, possibly explained by the fact that dead cicadas are a large source of nutrients. I found that female cicadas were twice as likely to be missing their head, implying that females have more nutrients than males. In conclusion, my data suggests that Sarcophagidae larvae had a greater impact on periodical cicadas than what had previously been shown. This research serves to fill the gap in existing literature regarding the North Georgia periodical cicada population and answers the question of what happens to cicadas when they die.


This is a metadata-only record.



  • Subject
    • Biology

  • Institution
    • Gainesville

  • Event location
    • Nesbitt 3110

  • Event date
    • 25 March 2022

  • Date submitted

    20 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      Evan Lampert