Cicadas are a kind of flying insect that is found mostly in the United States in the summer or spring months. To be more specific, cicadas are found in maximum numbers from June to August. If you live in the United States you must be aware of the nuisance they create.
Oftentimes people wonder what makes them create such noise. Well, cicadas have a tough outer membrane called tymbals, which make the sound. If noticed carefully, you would find out that not all cicadas make a similar sound. Different species make different characteristic sounds. Usually, the males make the noise to attract females.
If you are dealing with cicadas often, you have a real problem to tackle. They can be really annoying. Not only do they disturb people with their loud buzzing noise but also destroy landscapes. A lot of people have tried several methods to get rid of cicadas. Hardly did they get rid of the problem. This is enough to make anyone worry.
If the noise made by cicadas reaches more than 100 DB, you must do something. Mentioned below are some useful ways to make cicadas quiet and enjoy this season in peace.
11 Ways To Get Rid of Cicadas’ Noise
Did you recently shift to a new place, without knowing whether cicadas are a periodical or annual nuisance? Are you facing trouble in dealing with them? We suggest you do a bit of research on the location of the place first.
If cicadas appear once in that region, they are most likely to come out in summer. But, if 17 years is soon to be completed and you are expecting a 17-year brood, nothing you do would be effective. They will come in large groups and leave on their own, allowing you to enjoy the next 16 years in peace.
At first, even the periodical emergence of cicadas might be intolerable for you. Call the local pest control company to get rid of them as soon as possible. If the issue persists, you must try out the following tricks to eliminate the unwanted noise of cicadas.
Cicadas prefer to be in dry and sunny areas. Spraying water on them gives you momentary relief from their incessant buzzing. What you can do is water your lawn often, to keep the grass moist. That would prevent cicadas from settling in that area, giving you relief from their nuisance.
To prevent cicadas from sitting on trees around your house, you must spray water on them as well. This might not be a permanent solution but will certainly get cicadas to shut up.
Apart from water, homeowners can also use garden-grade vinegar to get rid of cicada noise. Spray the vinegar on grass and trees, where cicadas mostly settle. Vinegar is highly effective in killing baby cicadas and nymphs. Vinegar is acidic, but not harmful for people and pets.
Once the vinegar gets dried out, you can allow your pets and kids to play outside. The only downside to using vinegar is that it affects the plant condition as well. Excessive use of vinegar on plants and trees might destroy them completely. We would advise people to try out the other methods mentioned below before resorting to this one.
Take help of boiling water
Another pet-friendly and safe way to make cicadas be quiet is by pouring hot water into their breeding spots. Look for tiny holes made by cicadas. You are sure to find them on your lawn.
If you find any, pour down hot water into the hole. Take proper precautions so that you don’t hurt yourself while carrying hot water or pouring it down. This method too has a downside. Pouring hot water might burn the specific lawn area when it’s being poured.
Turn the Soil
When cicadas are at their nymph stage, they prefer living in quiet undisturbed areas in the ground. That’s why you wouldn’t see baby cicadas on farms.
What you can do is, right before the season of cicadas arrives, you can churn your garden soil. This will not only prevent cicadas from settling in your garden but also direct insects away.
Prune your plants
Pruning is another way to get rid of cicadas’ sound. If you notice branches that are filled with eggs of cicadas, cut them short.
That will prevent cicadas from settling in the same branch next time. Repeat this process for all the branches of trees. Keep them short.
If you expect a large periodical brood of cicadas, you shouldn’t plant any new shrubs or plants in your garden, unless cicadas go away.
We advise so because when a female cicada lays eggs on the branches, it makes small slits, which affect the branches and might even damage the entire plant.
Cover Trees and Shrubs
In order to prevent large groups of cicadas from settling on trees and plants and affecting their growth eventually, you can protect your garden by covering the plants with nets. You can also wrap a foil or sticky paper on small plants that are still growing.
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Use Gardening Equipment Early
Don’t do your gardening activities when it’s hot. It’s the ideal time for cicadas. The sound of the lawnmower or leaf blowers or weed hackers soup attracts the attention of cicadas.
Finish all your work when it’s early morning or in the evening. Remember that cicadas are most active during the daytime. Therefore, in the afternoons, you must water your garden thoroughly to stop cicada noise.
Spray pesticides and repellents
We wouldn’t suggest killing cicadas because these insects stay for a few weeks and leave on their own. But if they have become intolerable, this is another option to stop cicadas’ noise.
If you are tired of living through the incessant buzzing noise of cicadas, you might find this an effective option. Buy an average pesticide or insecticide from the market and spread it on trees and across your lawn.
However, you must keep in mind the well-being of the plants in your garden. Don’t spray more than what’s necessary. That would affect the quality of your garden as well, which you surely wouldn’t want.
Use noise-canceling headphones
Though this wouldn’t make cicadas shut up, it would certainly allow you to be at peace. Even after trying all the above-mentioned methods, if you couldn’t eliminate cicadas buzzing completely, you must put on your headphones, play loud music and proceed with your work. You must buy good quality noise-canceling earphones to stop cicada noise from bothering you.
Have you been looking for an excuse to buy a pair of good headphones? Now is a good time to grab them. However, you must also know that if you simply put them on without playing music, you might still hear the buzzing of cicadas in the background. But it wouldn’t be loud enough to affect your sanity.
Allow your hungry pets to feed on cicadas
Cicadas are quite clever. Do you know why do they swarm in large numbers? It’s a predator satiation strategy they follow. This means that any predator feeding on them would get tired of eating them in a few days.
If you are allowing your dog or cat to feed on cicadas, be careful to not overfeed your pets as they might experience digestive problems.
Sometimes they can get choked if they eat a whole bunch altogether. Again, if you had sprayed pesticides in large quantities before the arrival of cicadas groups, you mustn’t allow your pets to feed on the pesticide-laced cicadas.
Use white noise machines
If you have to live through the never-ending noise of cicadas, it might be better if it’s a relaxing noise. For this purpose, use white noise machines which can mitigate the noise a lot, allowing you to work better and sleep better at night.
This will certainly not get cicadas to shut up but would prevent you from losing your peace of mind. Though these machines haven’t been scientifically tested against the gin of cicadas, they did prove useful against barking dogs and crying babies. Therefore giving them a try might be worth it.
Apart from the above-mentioned methods, you can also opt to soundproof your room. It’s an expensive option to consider but would reduce the amount of cicada noise entering. Not only would soundproofing help you to eliminate cicada sound, but also would obstruct any outside noise from entering the room.
If you are looking for soundproofing methods, try weatherstripping your windows and doors. Install a door sweep at the bottom of your room. Hang soundproof blankets and curtains from the walls as well.
These are the various strategies you can apply to solve an annual cicadas problem. If you have managed to kill a large number of cicadas, you must immediately clean the area, else it will start stinking in some days.
If you don’t want to call a professional for cleaning the area, you can do it yourself by using a shovel and rake. So, the next time you see a swarm of cicadas in your area, you mustn’t freak. Try out these methods and you are sure to get effective results.