- Color: red brown to black.
- Size: males are 1inch long and females are 1 1/4 inches long.
- The male’s wings cover 75% of the abdomen and the female’s wings are reduced to small wing pads.
- The egg capsule (i.e., ootheca) is dark red-brown and becomes black with age, 3/8-inch long, and typically has eight eggs per side.
Habits of the Oriental Cockroach:
- Females produce an average of eight egg capsules each of which contains 16 eggs.
- Egg capsules are dropped or, using secretions from their mouths, glued in protected locations such as cracks and crevices near food sources.
- Developmental time (egg to adult): is 206 to 800 days depending on temperature.
- Females live 34 to 181 days; males 112 to 160 days.
- They are abundant in sewers and commercial facilities, e.g., groceries, prisons, restaurants, hospitals, and office and apartment buildings.
- Indoors, they prefer damp, secluded places, e.g., crawlspaces, basements, water meter boxes, and drains.
- Often found in bathtubs and sinks because, lacking the small pads on their tarsi (i.e., last segments of the legs) which are commonly found on other cockroaches, they are unable to crawl up smooth surfaces. Outdoors, even in cold weather, they are found in planters, ground covers, stones, leaf litter, and other debris.
- They feed on decaying organic matter but prefer starchy foods.
Damage Caused by the Oriental Cockroach:
- Potential mechanical transmitters of many bacterial, fungal, viral and protozoan diseases primarily through contamination of food preparation surfaces.
- Their body parts, excretions and other secretions can cause allergies, asthma and hypersensitivity reactions especially in children.
- Fecal deposits and brown secretory deposits.
- Strong musk odor indicative of large population.
- Potentially infested products which are brought into structures.
How to Control and Kill the Oriental Cockroach:
- Cardboard and plastic sticky traps should be used to pinpoint sources of cockroach infestation and to monitor areas of suspected infestation.
- Visual inspections should be conducted at night using a flashlight.
- Sources of food, water, and harborage essential for their survival should be eliminated.
- Clutter should be minimized as large cockroaches like to hide in stacked boxes, cartons, rolled carpeting and stored paper and cardboard materials, and especially in dark, damp locations.
- Vacuum cleaning can be used to physically remove exposed cockroaches.
- Moisture sources should be eliminated by repairing leaks, improving drainage, and installing screened vents in order to increase airflow.
- Caulk should be used to eliminate harborage and prevent entry into structures, e.g., cracks at which sinks and fixtures are mounted to the wall and/or floor; around all types of plumbing, baseboard molding, and corner guards where shelves and cabinets meet walls and door frames, and cracks on or near food preparation surfaces. Cockroach access routes from wall voids into occupied spaces should be sealed with caulk or grout, especially around plumbing and electrical fixtures.
- Basement floor drains should be protected with screens or basket inserts and cleaned regularly.