- Latin Name: Blattella germanica
- Size: ½”
- Color: German cockroaches are tan or brown with two dark parallel stripes on the body.
- Shape: They are flat and oval shaped with wings.
- Found in: All over the United States.
- Overview: German cockroaches are small, fast and rapidly reproducing. They prefer to live inside homes or commercial establishments. The German cockroach is easily confused for the Asian cockroach, but Asian cockroaches are more likely to live outside. Unlike the German cockroach, the Asian cockroach can fly.
Origin: The German cockroach originated in Africa.
Climate: The German cockroach looks for warm damp areas and if inside will be found in the kitchen or the bathroom. They do not like cold temperatures and will most likely live indoors.
Favorite Foods: The German cockroach prefers steak and potatoes and any food with grease, starch or meat. They will also eat sweets, garbage, glue and soap. They have been known to chew the legs off other German cockroaches when food is scarce.
Family: The German cockroach lifespan is about nine months. They develop from egg to adult in just over 100 days and quickly reproduce. They are known to be the fastest reproducing cockroach. A female will house the eggs in a case on her abdomen until they are ready to hatch. Some eggs will hatch while still on the mother, but most will hatch within a day of the case being released from the female. A typical case carries 30 to 40 eggs. A female will have up to six cases during her short life. A nymph is born from the case and will develop into an adult in six to 12 weeks. The nymph will molt six times before becoming an adult. The mother or other cockroaches will eat the skin shed from the nymph.
Unique Facts: A German cockroach is unable to fly and the smallest of the cockroaches.
Signs of a problem: German cockroaches are usually transported into a house with bags or boxes. In apartment complexes, they will travel through vents or plumbing from one unit to the next. Carefully inspect any used appliance before bringing it into your home, as an old damp washing machine is a great home for German cockroaches. Like other cockroaches, they are nocturnal, so your best chance at finding them is at night.
Do they attack humans? While cockroaches aren’t known for biting humans, the German cockroach is the species most likely to bite. They emit a foul musty smelling order when frightened. Because they feed on garbage, they may transport up to 50 different diseases. The feces from German cockroaches contain disease and cause asthma suffers to have difficulty breathing.
Stopping an infestation: Due to the rate that German cockroaches reproduce and their ability to hide in very small spaces, it is difficult to stop an infestation without the help of a pest control professional. Sugar coated bait is an option, but it will most likely end up being a costly inefficient solution as not all cockroaches will eat the bait and they will continue to reproduce.