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American Cockroach

An American Cockroach coming out of a drinking cup

Scientific Name: Periplaneta americana

Size: TL 55mm

What does it look like?

The American Cockroach is a large reddish-brown cockroach, with a pale yellowish-brown margin on the pronotal shield. They have large wings (extending past the tip of the abdomen in males) and are competent fliers.

Where is it found?

Native to Africa, and introduced to most countries around the world, including Australia. Found in close association with urban human habitation.

What are its habitats & habits?

The American Cockroach is mostly found indoors, where it is active at night, it is a pest species of urban households and similar dwellings, where it favours darker areas during the day, including subfloor areas, roof voids, wall cavities and gardens. It will eat most organic matter, particularly fermenting foods, is a vector for a number of bacterial diseases, and is a leading cause of allergic reactions.

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This species features in my book¬†A Naturalist’s Guide to the Insects of Australia

Cover of the book, A Naturalist's Guide to the Insects of Australia

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