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PeerJ. 2018 Jul 31;6:e5282. doi: 10.7717/peerj.5282. eCollection 2018.

The periodical cicada four-year acceleration hypothesis revisited and the polyphyletic nature of Brood V, including an updated crowd-source enhanced map (Hemiptera: Cicadidae: Magicicada).

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College of Integrative Sciences, Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT, United States of America.
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, The University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, United States of America.
Cleveland Metroparks, Cleveland, OH, United States of America.
Long Island, NY, United States of America.
Massachusetts Cicadas, Marlborough, MA, United States of America.
National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, Wellington, New Zealand.
Department of Biology, Muhlenberg College, Allentown, PA, United States of America.
Department of Biology, Washington and Lee University, Lexington, VA, United States of America.
Department of Biology, Mount St. Joseph University, Cincinnati, OH, United States of America.
Research Services, The University of Connecticut Libraries, Storrs, CT, United States of America.
Cicada mania, NJ, United States of America.
Batavia, OH, United States of America.
Mid-Atlantic Cicadas, MD, United States of America.
Department of Zoology, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan.
Graduate School of Science and Technology, Shizuoka University, Hamamatsu, Japan.


The periodical cicadas of North America (Magicicada spp.) are well-known for their long life cycles of 13 and 17 years and their mass synchronized emergences. Although periodical cicada life cycles are relatively strict, the biogeographic patterns of periodical cicada broods, or year-classes, indicate that they must undergo some degree of life cycle switching. We present a new map of periodical cicada Brood V, which emerged in 2016, and demonstrate that it consists of at least four distinct parts that span an area in the United States stretching from Ohio to Long Island. We discuss mtDNA haplotype variation in this brood in relation to other periodical cicada broods, noting that different parts of this brood appear to have different origins. We use this information to refine a hypothesis for the formation of periodical cicada broods by 1- and 4-year life cycle jumps.


Biogeography; Climate; Crowdsourcing; Distribution; Mapping; Periodical Cicada; mtDNA

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare there are no competing interests.

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