Let’s face it, cockroaches aren’t the most beautiful pests out there. The fact that they eat both faeces and other cockroaches doesn’t help in the matter.
These crawling insects can be a big concern for both homeowners and businesses alike. Equipping yourself with the knowledge and understanding of what a cockroach looks like can save you both time and money, helping to proactively react to any cockroach infestations that might develop.
How to identify cockroaches
As with most insects, cockroaches have 3 pairs of legs, large compound eyes and two antennae. Their bodies are divided into a thorax of three segments and a ten-segmented abdomen.
It’s important to note that the appearance of cockroaches can differ slightly depending on the species. With that in mind, to successfully identify a cockroach, you need to understand what the common species look like to determine which one has decided to inhabit your property.
Types of cockroaches
There are around 4,600 different species of cockroaches currently in existence. Of those 4,600, only 30 species of cockroaches are associated with human environments, and of those 30, only 4 are considered pests.
The 3 most common species of cockroaches are:
- American cockroach (Periplaneta americana)
- German cockroach (Blattella germanica)
- Oriental cockroach (Blatta orientalis)
What do American cockroaches look like?
- 35-40mm in length;
- Shiny reddish brown colour;
- Area behind the head is outlined by a yellow band;
- Wings fully cover their body, with the male’s wings being longer than the females.
What do Oriental cockroaches look like?
- 35-40mm in length;
- Dark brown or black in colour;
- Female wings are underdeveloped and have a wider body;
- Males wings cover 2/4 of their body.
What do German cockroaches look like?
- 12-15mm in length;
- Light brown/tan in colour;
- Has two dark, parallel streaks on their pronotum;
- Males are thinner and slender than the females and have a tapered abdomen.
Do cockroaches have wings?
Yes, cockroaches do have wings. They have a set of wings which are attached to the second and third segments of the thorax. The first pair of wings are adapted to protect the cockroach’s body and cover the wings when not in flight, whilst the hind wings are used for flight.
However, it is important to note, that although cockroaches have wings, they aren’t strong fliers at all. To quote Buzz Lightyear, they simply “fall with style” and only glide for short distances. It is much more efficient and quicker for them to run.
Think you might have a cockroach problem in your home or business? Get in contact with the experts at Rentokil today for immediate assistance. We are here to help.