Cockroaches

 

 Description:

Adults are about 1-1/2 inches long and reddish brown, with wings that cover the entire length of the abdomen.The cockroach has long, powerful legs and can run very fast. Both male and female are fully winged.. Males and females are about the same size. The wings of the male extend slightly beyond the tip of the abdomen, while those of the female are about the same length as the abdomen. Nymphs are smaller and do not have wings. Nymphs are brown colored and run very fast.

 

 Diet:

Cockroaches like to eat just about anything!

 Cockroaches like food that contain starch. They will eat wallpaper paste, cheese, beer,leather, bakery products,hair, flakes of dried skin, soiled clothing ,starch in book binding paint, bookbindings, and paper. They also like to eat the crumbs that we humans leave behind.

 

Habits:

Cockroaches spend most of their time in cracks and crevices.The most preferred areas are those located nearest food and water sources but which are warm and have a high relative humidity. You can find cockroaches in large commercial buildings such as restaurants, bakeries, grocery stores, food processing plants, hospitals, etc., where cockroaches usually infest food-storage and food-preparation areas, basements, and steam tunnels. They are also found in homes. During summer months, they can be found outdoors in yards and alleys. They are commonly found in city sewer systems.

 

 

Habitat:

Cockroaches live anywhere! You can find them all over the world.

They live indoors, like in kitchens, classrooms, or any warm, snug place.

They live outdoors, like in forests close to water, and the tropics.

They love wallpaper, cloth, ink, and cardboard boxes. They will hitch hike by hiding in boxes. Then they get loaded onto boats and wagons to find warm spots to live.

The requirements of cockroaches (i.e., high humidity, warmth, and food sources) can be found in a typical home. Although they generally live in moist areas, they can survive in dry areas if they have access to water. They prefer warm temperatures around 84 degrees Fahrenheit and do not tolerate cold. They die at temperatures below 15 degrees Fahrenheit.

 

 

 

Life Cycle:

Cockroaches have three developmental stages: egg, nymph, and adult. The female cockroach lays an egg case which contains about 14 eggs. The eggs are dark brown, symmetrically shaped, and about 5/16 inch long.. She hides it in cracks and crevices, or may drop it in a briefcase, pocket or drawer. Nymphs come out in about 1-2 months.

Young nymphs are grayish brown and after the first few molts become reddish brown. They molt 13 times for 6-12 months until they are an adult. They like the warm months of June, July and August. They can live up to 2 years. Adult females produce an average of 150 young.

 

Pictures:

Check here for some American Cockroach pictures.

 

Helpful:

Crushed cockroaches can be applied to a stinging wound to relieve pain. They eat bedbugs (so you can sleep tight!).

Human beings from Australia to China to Japan have been known to eat roaches for nourishment or for medicinal value .They are being used for medical research.

 

Harmful: 

They eat and contaminate your food They secrete an unpleasant odor. Many people develop allergies to cockroaches. They make people sneeze.They are considered, by entomologists, to be one of the worst household pests.Most people think that cockroaches carry disease. This is not true.

 

Interesting Facts:

Cockroaches have been on the earth for more than 400 million years. Like termites, some roach species can digest wood.

 They are good survivors. In fact,they were alive when dinosaurs walked the Earth! They were probably the first flying animals.

Sailors on infested ships have been known to wear gloves on their hands while asleep to keep the roaches from gnawing off their fingernails.

 

 Click here to see a close-up movie of a cockroach eating.