Cicada crawls around CNN reporter’s neck ahead of live shot

Cicadas seem to be everywhere – in Americans’ backyards, restaurants, tacos and even before one CNN reporter’s live shot. While preparing to go on the air, Manu Raju didn’t immediately notice a cicada stealthily climbing up his jacket. Seconds later, Raju felt the bug behind his neck and quickly swatted it off. 

Raju is heard saying “oh my gosh” and “do I have more on me?” as he checks to see if there’s any lingering cicadas. The incident was recorded and Raju posted the video on his Twitter. 

Raju later appeared on the John Berman and Brianna Keilar’s New Day show to explain provide context on the incident. He said minutes before the live shot and while indoors, another cicada had fallen out of his pocket.

Had an unwelcome visitor try to crawl into my live shot earlier. pic.twitter.com/Pu68z0cWSN

Raju and the CNN team with him decided “the whole world needs to see this” and enlisted one producer and his 15-year-old daughter to remove his explicit language from the video. 

Raju, who appeared on the show under the title “Chief Cicada Correspondent” said while the cicadas gross him out, his children are fascinated by the bugs. He said they are even on the cicadas research committee at their school.

When asked how he found the strength in that moment, Raju laughed and said “It was hard, I held back my tears.”

JUST NOW: “The context is important here.”@mkraju with his first public comments after he found the strength to survive an on-camera #[email protected]/Wi4Kspassl

Raju’s video has been viewed over 1.8 million times.

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Cicadas have existed for more than 5 million years and emerge from underground to begin their mating season every 17 years. Brood X cicadas usually emerge in late April and early May and are expected to die off in late June or July.

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