Pest Guide - Cockroaches
Adult German cockroaches are light brown except for the shield behind the head marked with two dark stripes, which run lengthwise on the body. Young roaches are wingless and nearly black with a single light stripe running down the middle of the back, and the adults are about 5/8 inch long. Egg capsules are light tan and usually yield about 36 baby cockroaches!
German cockroaches are the most common roaches found in houses and restaurants. Most cockroaches have a flattened, oval shape, spiny legs, and long, filamentous antennae. Immature stages are smaller, have undeveloped wings and resemble the adults. They eat food of all kinds and may hitchhike into the house on egg cartons, soft drink cartons, sacks of potatoes or onions, used furniture or appliances, etc. and are notorious for being the source of residential infestations.
Once they hitchhike into your home, German roaches generally develop in kitchens and bathrooms. During the day, these roaches may be found hiding clustered behind baseboard moldings, pictures and clocks, in cracks around cabinets, closets or pantries, and in and under stoves, refrigerators and dishwashers. German roaches do not like motion and usually avoid light, so if you are seeing them in the daytime while you are moving about the room, you probably have a larger population than you realize.
The Oriental cockroach is dark reddish brown in color, so dark that it is sometimes referred to as the "Black Beetle". When disturbed, it may run rapidly and adults may fly. Females are wingless, and males have wings. Female Oriental cockroaches can be distinguished from large nymphs by the wing stubs which have definite venation. The adult roach is about 1 inch long (some being reported as 1 1/4 inch in length) and immature cockroaches resemble adults except that they are wingless. Unlike other pest cockroaches, oriental cockroaches cannot climb up smooth surfaces. Oriental cockroaches generally live in moist areas, but can survive in dry areas if they have access to water. These cockroaches are common in basements, crawl spaces, cracks and crevices of porches, foundations, and walkways adjacent to buildings. They feed on a wide variety of plant and animal material. The Oriental cockroach breeds well in unventilated crawl spaces or basements where humidity is high.
American cockroach adults are 1 and 1/2 inches long (38mm), making them the largest of the house-infesting cockroaches. With reddish brown, fully developed wings, the American cockroaches have a yellowish margin on the thorax or body region behind the head. When disturbed, they may run rapidly and adults may fly. Immature cockroaches resemble adults except that they are wingless.
American cockroaches generally live in moist areas, but can survive in dry areas if they have access to water. In residential areas, these cockroaches live in basements, around pipes and sewers, and may move outdoors into yards during warm weather. These cockroaches are common in basements, crawl spaces, cracks and crevices of porches, foundations, and walkways adjacent to buildings. Many times, the American cockroach can be found under decks, under mulching materials, inside hollow block construction, or in any cool and damp area. They feed on a wide variety of plant and animal material.