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Georgian emergency workers ask people to stop calling 911 about ear-splitting cicada sex parties

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A pair of cicadas prepare to scream so loud that people call 911 on them.
A pair of cicadas prepare to scream so loud that people call 911 on them.
Photo: Chip Somodevilla (Getty Images)

The biggest event of the season—the emergence of a massive swarm of cicadas called Brood X that’s waited 17 years to come up out of the ground and party—is finally here. As promised, the bugs have announced their arrival not just by flying around doing typical bug things, but also by screaming about wanting to fuck at volumes loud enough that people are calling 911 about it.

As these unsettling sweet nothings intensify, their startling sound has become enough of a problem that Georgia’s Union County Fire/Rescue & EMA has had to issue a statement on Facebook asking residents not to call them every time they hear it.


“Union County E911 is receiving multiple 911 calls for ‘alarms’ in the neighborhood,” the post reads. “More than likely these ‘alarms’ are not alarms at all but a bug, Brood X.” The statement points out that these creatures are “some of the loudest of all insects” and that “their song can be loud enough to cause hearing loss” while being mistaken for “a vehicle or home alarm system.”

“If you think you hear an alarm,” the post concludes, “ensure that it is an alarm and determine the location before contacting authorities.”

To be completely fair to the people of Union County, the cicadas are incredibly loud and some of their calls sound like this. For further context, when we covered Brood X a few months back, experts described their mating songs using comparisons ranging from “the sound of a chainsaw” or “a flying saucer” to something akin to throwing water into hot oil or hearing “an angry squirrel.”


Still, as bizarre as the bugs’ sex screams may be, there’s no need to call 911. Brood X is only here for a little while, and all they want to do with their time above ground is to eat and bang in peace. Let them enjoy their summer vacation, no matter how loud it gets, without calling the cops on them. After all, weren’t we all young once, flitting from branch to branch, and so excited about life that the only way to express our feelings was to scream angry squirrel noises about them?

[via Boing Boing]

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