Cicada-geddon 2024 has been a somewhat weird experience.

In the months leading up to this "historic emergence," we were told by lots of experts that basically the entire state of Illinois would be literally crawling with, and drowned out by, the incessant mating calls of billions and billions, if not a trillion, 17-year cicadas.

In talking to people, it's become clear that some areas are really getting what all the hype said they'd be getting when it comes to the cicada population. Cicadas crawling everywhere and climbing into the nearest trees, a stunning volume of noise, and of course, plenty of cicada pee (also known as "honeydew") flying everywhere.

We go where we want. (Getty Images)
We go where we want. (Getty Images)

Other spots, like my neighborhood and the neighborhood our building is in, have heard very few, if any cicadas at all. Conversely, a friend in Pecatonica says the cicadas are so thick and so loud that she can't hear herself think at times.

I guess we can scratch any ideas we had about an even covering of cicadas throughout the state.

Us, too. (Getty Images)

Just Like When You Have Visiting Relatives, The Whole Cicada Thing Has Gotten Old Fast, And It's Turned Into A "Now That They're Here, When Will They Leave" Scenario

Unlike that over-staying relative we all have, the cicadas aren't going to pay for an expensive dinner to make up for their bad behavior right before they leave. They're just going to drop dead in your yard when their party's over unless something eats them before that.

It would be creepy if relatives did that. Mostly.

So how will you know that cicada-time is getting close to being over...or at least halftime?

Look for this:

Periodical Brood X cicadas mating on a wooden deck.
Getty Images

Or this:

Cicada Mating
Getty Images

And of course, this:

Cicada mating
Getty Images

Once You Start Seeing Cicadas Pair Off, Especially In Trees, You Can Feel Better In Knowing That Cicada-Geddon 2024 Has Reached, Or Gone Past The Halfway Point

Dr. Cicada, a man also known as John Cooley, a University of Connecticut entomology professor, told "...they’re really going. Once you see lots of these up in the trees, you know we’re at the peak. It's gonna be like this a little while longer, depends on the weather, then fade out."

After the mating comes the egg-laying, then the cicadas begin a huge die-off, leaving cicada bodies scattered around on the ground.

Cicada experts are still leaning on the theory that our whole cicada experience should be almost completely wrapped up in time for Independence Day on the 4th of July.

Here's what the aftermath can look like:

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Gallery Credit: Michelle Heart

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