The headlines read like something out of a creepy horror flick: "Cicadas set to overrun Hudson Valley, East Coast," "Sex-Crazed Cicadas Will Soon Outnumber Humans 600-to-1," and, not to be outdone, "Plague of Sex Crazed Grasshoppers to Hit the East Coast." And, besides that last one, they're not so far off base.

Billions of cicadas will indeed swarm the East Coast soon. The large, winged insects with bulging red eyes can show up in swarms as dense as 1.5 million cicadas per acre and will most likely exist in abundance between North Carolina and Connecticut. After spending 17 years feeding on roots underground, scientists say the bugs are ready to make a noisy return for their mating season.

But while cicadas are annoying and, for some, frightening to look at, they don't sting or suck human blood. In fact, cicadas are essentially harmless to humans and animals.

The crazed attention that the insects receive is largely due to their size, their immense swarms, and their patter of re-emergence only every few years.

Be assured that the cicadas set to descend upon the U.S are not worried about us humans. But with their sole focus on mating, they can really get going, emitting a loud buzzing that can be heard for miles. So while they don't pose health risks, East Coasters may want to invest in some earplugs for the noisy few weeks that are sure to ensue.