American Cockroaches

Learn about American Cockroaches

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The American Cockroach is about 1 3/8 – 2 1/8 inches long and reddish-brown. The area behind the head has a yellowish band around the edge. American Cockroaches are among the largest in the cockroach family. These cockroaches have a somewhat flattened oval shape, spiny legs, and filamentous antennae that are uniformly brown and as long as or longer than the body.
American Roach


American Cockroaches are very aggressive and strong fliers. They prefer warm, damp areas and are often seen in bakeries, restaurants, basements, and outdoors. Cockroaches need moisture, food, and non-freezing temperatures to survive and thrive, and drains provide all three. That’s why the American Cockroach is often found in the city sewer systems and can travel up and enter your home or building from there; because of this, they are sometimes referred to as a sewer or drain Cockroach.

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These scavengers will eat almost anything, although they prefer fermenting foods. They are commonly found in food preparation areas.

Life Cycle & Reproduction

A female American cockroach produces 6 to 14 egg cases during her lifetime. She carries her egg case for a few hours or days after it is formed, then drops or glues it in a sheltered site near a food source, often a crack or crevice—the eggs hatch within 38 to 49 days.  
The American cockroach’s development time (egg to adult) is greatly influenced by temperature and averages about 15 months. Under ideal conditions, an adult female can live up to 15 months, and males for a somewhat shorter period.


Cockroaches have spread at least 33 kinds of bacteria, six parasitic worms, and at least seven other kinds of human pathogens. They can pick up germs on the spines of their legs and bodies as they crawl through decaying matter or sewage and then carry these into food or onto food surfaces. Recent medical studies have shown that cockroach allergens cause many allergic reactions in inner-city children. They were even shown to cause asthma in children. Click here to learn about Cockroach Removal.