Biology & Reproduction

cicadakiller 1Cicada killers resemble yellow jackets but it is actually a type of wasp. The cicada killer earns its name from using an actual Cicada as food for its young. The wasp will dig a burrow in search of a cicada, and then begin nesting once one is found. The reproduction of cicada killers can be a little disturbing; the female wasp will sting a cicada and bring it back to her burrow. She’ll bring about one or two back to the burrow and lay an egg on one. The hatched egg will then feed on the cicada until it’s fully grown. Cicada Killers are not a colonizing bug, so they’ll only be found alone in a nesting site. They are also an overwintering bug. The larvae will grow in their burrows during the winter, pupate in spring, and around July to August it will leave the burrow as an adult. Only the females construct these burrows. Females are also the only ones who can sting, but won’t attack someone unless they’re threatened. Most people are stung by cicada killers when they step on them. Males will buzz around but cannot sting.

Habits

Nesting areas for cicada killers are usually in bare ground and sandy soil. Many of them will use the same general area for nesting. While burrowing, the females excavate a small amount of soil which can cause slight damage to lawns.

Control

Cicada killers are considered very beneficial because they help reduce cicada populations. However, if there is someone in the home who has a bee or wasp allergy, control may be necessary. While only a professional can provide the proper control method, it’s best to eliminate bare-ground areas to discourage future nesting by the cicada killer.

Abby arrived on time and was accompanied by her father, the owner of the business. Both of them were very professional. Abby entered the crawl space and in addition to inspection and reporting, she drilled and sprayed each pier. She also drilled holes about a foot apart in all concrete around the perimeter while her father dug a little trench around the entire house, about two inches deep and three inches wide a couple inches from the edge. All of these locations also received the Termidor spray. The product is good for five years and we also signed up for their annual inspection program. For $90, they'll inspect the crawl space and ensure no new activity is occurring. Their work this day took a few hours and was very well done. She provided me a detailed report, pictures, and the state required paperwork for insecticide use. I'm very happy with Masters Pest Control.

-John Giardina

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