Cockroach (Blattodea) | Top Details, Characteristics & Amazing Facts

Cockroaches have existed on Earth for about 300 million years, dating back to the Carboniferous period, and are considered one of the oldest groups of insects on the planet. While most people know cock roaches as nothing more than pests, they play an important role in the ecosystem and
are valued by scientists as indicators of environmental health. If you’re unfamiliar with these interesting creatures, here’s a brief overview of everything you need to know about cockroaches.

Physical Features

Cockroaches are stout-bodied insects with flattened bodies. They have two hard forewings used for protection and two membranous hind wings that consist mainly of veins. The term cock roach is derived from French cocorico, meaning the crowing of a rooster, a result of its noisy scuttling across floors at night. Most species are black or brown but many tropical cock roaches are brightly coloured to ward off predators. The legs of cock roaches consist of large claws and numerous bristles on their ends. Although they are excellent climbers and swimmers, most live on land scavenging for food in dark, moist environments such as forests or around human habitats.

The common cockroach is light to dark brown. It has a yellowish margin on its body region behind its head. As an adult roach grows older, it loses its colour and turns greyish-white in colour. The Australian cockroach’s female is similar to that of the common American roach but slightly smaller in size. Its male is reddish-brown with a darker shade around its wings.

Are They Dangerous?

Cockroaches can be pests in houses and commercial buildings. They feed on all kinds of organic matter including wood, paper, clothing, leather, and food products. Cock roaches come out at night to scavenge for food but can also be seen during daylight hours when alarmed or when infestations are heavy. While they do not spread disease, they can contaminate food with their feces and cast skins. It is very common for cock roaches to invade a property via used packaging from shops or restaurants as well as through cardboard boxes. Cockroaches also gain access to homes through plumbing or drainage systems and even through open windows or gaps around doors and window frames.

Diet and Behaviour

Cockroaches are omnivores and they prefer to eat decaying organic matter. They will eat nearly anything that is not too hot or too cold. They can be found in living quarters scavenging for food in kitchens, bathrooms, and other areas where food is stored or prepared. Although they don’t sting or bite people, cockroaches can transmit diseases such as salmonella, dysentery, and gastroenteritis by contaminating food and surfaces with faecal droppings. Cockroaches are most active at night but may occasionally be seen during daylight hours especially if it is warm enough. Many species fly at night which can lead to infestations being discovered suddenly when residents see flying insects indoors.


The lifespan of a cockroach varies depending on its species. Roaches in captivity have been known to live up to five years. In nature, some tropical roaches can live between two and three years. However, most die within a year or less from being born due to predation and cannibalism.

Environment and Where Do They Live?

Cockroaches live in almost every environment on Earth. They prefer warm, moist areas and can be found worldwide. There are over 4,000 species of cockroaches living in a variety of habitats. They live on every continent except Antarctica and can even survive underwater for as long as 30 minutes! Tropical cock roaches prefer to inhabit decaying logs and trees while temperate cockroaches often reside under rocks or inside cracks and crevices in cinderblock structures. Subterranean cockroaches are most commonly associated with sewers; however, they have also been discovered living beneath concrete floors in five-star hotels! No matter what their natural habitat is, most cockroaches flourish near humans where food is readily available.


Incredible Facts

Did you know they can hold their breath for up to 40 minutes? If your answer is no, then let us give you some interesting facts about these insects. Let’s take a look at one of their habits: survival of mother nature. Cockroaches have been on Earth for more than 300 million years. They are one of our planet’s most successful species! It’s hard to believe that in all those years there haven’t been any predators able to eat them – but it seems like Mother Nature has forgotten about them! That doesn’t mean that cockroaches don’t need to hide from other animals though – especially from people.

The Different Kinds of Roaches That Can be Found Around the World

Roaches are insects that live in warm and humid environments. There are over 4,000 species of roaches around the world. Some examples of roaches include oriental cockroaches, American cockroaches, and German cockroaches. Roaches will eat just about anything including fruit, vegetables, and human waste. Most types of roach can fly and some types can even swim! Roach eggs usually hatch within a few weeks and go through 5 molts before they reach full maturity. Most roach species can live 2-5 years but some have been known to live up to 7 years!

1 Comment

No comments yet. Why don’t you start the discussion?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *