If you haven't heard, cicadas are going to come out in the billions this summer in parts of the Midwest. It's going to be a loud summer in parts of the country. But that's not all! Zombie cicadas may take over Minnesota because of a deadly fungus they can get! I'll explain in a moment.

Cicadapocalypse 2024

There are two different broods of cicadas that are called periodical cicadas, so they don't come out every year. This summer is the first time since 1803 that the two broods of cicadas will emerge in the same year.

Here's what's happening: Cicadas have babies when they're out and about. Then the babies go into the ground to grow up and be big strong cicadas. One brood of these cicadas comes out every 13 years, the other is every 17 years. So every once in a while they come out at the same time.

This is one of those years.

READ MORE: Billions of Cicadas Set to Swarm Midwest this Summer

Yes, there are cicadas that come out every year, but these guys are different. The ones we're talking about look like this:

Jason Weingardt, Unsplash
Jason Weingardt, Unsplash
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So it's going to be a very loud summer, especially in Illinois where both broods have appeared in the past. This could also lead to lots of zombie cicadas, which we'll talk about more in a bit. First, we need to discuss the power of cicadas urinating...

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Cicada Pee is Insanely Powerful

Not only is it going to be loud, we also may get a little wet. And it's not rain we're feeling.

In a story from The FW, it says cicadas "have some high-powered streams of urine." And a study from the National Academy of Sciences says they're '"one of the smallest organisms capable of producing high-speed excretory jets.'" Awesome.

READ MORE: How Cicada Pee Will Shower the US

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Canva
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Zombie Cicadas

Now onto these zombie cicadas. There's an entomologist at the University of Connecticut named Dr. John Cooley who spoke with The Associated Press about all of the cicadas coming out this year along with some weird facts about cicadas.

One of those facts they discussed was about how cicadas can become zombies because of a deadly sexually transmitted fungus. Yes, cicadas can get STDs, and it sounds like it originates in males.

Dr. Cooley says it's "a real problem that 'is even stranger than science fiction.'"

When the male cicada gets this STD, it causes their body to be covered in a white fungus. And then their privates fall off.

But it doesn't kill the cicada, it just doesn't allow them to do the one thing they come out of the ground to do, which is reproduce. It keeps them alive so then it can spread to other nearby cicadas.

As Dr. Cooley puts it, "'They’re completely at the mercy of the fungus. They’re walking dead.'”

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Gallery Credit: Carly Ross