Va. Foresters Say Cicada Outbreak Damaging Trees

By: Virginia AP Email
By: Virginia AP Email
James Appleby / AP

James Appleby / AP

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) -- Virginia forestry officials are reporting widespread damage to oaks and other trees from this year's arrival of cicadas.

The Virginia Department of Forestry says the damage is the result of cicada females laying eggs in the thin-barked outer branches of trees and shrubs. The females slice into the branch, then deposit up to 80 eggs.

Forest health specialist Chris Asaro said a single female can create about 30 nests, laying as many as 600 eggs.

The egg-laying can cause structural damage known as "flagging." It is visible across much of the state's Piedmont and coastal plain.

Forestry officials say most medium to large trees will not suffer any serious long-term damage.

The department says the good news is, an outbreak of this brood of cicada won't occur for 17 years.


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