American Cockroach

The American cockroach is the largest of the species in this area.  This species often becomes abundant in city dumps and is most common in the basements and steam tunnels of restaurants, bakeries, food-processing facilities, and grocery stores.

Adults are approximately 1-1/2 inches long and reddish brown, with fully developed wings that cover the entire length of the abdomen . Both male and female are fully winged.  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 similar in appearance but are smaller and do not have wings.  American cockroaches are strong flyers and are readily attracted to outdoor lighting.  The American cockroach can be identified by its large size and reddish brown color with faded yellow edges on the thorax.

When indoors, the nymphs and adults are usually found in dark, warm and moist areas of basements and crawl spaces, and in and around bathtubs, clothes hampers, floor drains, pipe chases, and sewers.  They are also common around the manholes of sewers, and on the undersides of metal covers over large sump pumps.

American cockroaches feed on a variety of foods, with an apparent preference for decaying organic matter.  The adults can survive two or three months without food but only about a month without water.

Prevention Tips

American roaches can move from one building to the next during the summer, entering through cracks in foundations, around loose-fitting doors or windows.

Seal openings or cracks around exterior of home with putty or caulking.

Inspect sacks, cartons and boxes, etc., brought into the home and destroy any roaches.

Clean up spilled foods and liquids.

Avoid leaving scraps of food on unwashed dishes and counter tops

Rinse cans and bottles before putting in trash and transfer garbage outdoors into roach-proof receptacles.