Florida is a paradise for a wide variety of flora and fauna, making it one of the most beautiful and inviting states in the country. But, since we have such a wide variety of insects and animals that look similar to one another, it can sometimes be difficult to figure out which critter is invading our spaces. This is especially true for the cockroach, which is oftentimes misclassified as a water bug or a palmetto bug.
At McCall Service, we want to ensure you know how to identify the various types of cockroaches that call Florida home, so we’ve created a list of the most common roach species found in Northern Florida and what you need to know most about them.
The American Cockroach (Periplaneta americana)
American Cockroach Characteristics
An American cockroach (mistakenly referred to as a palmetto bug) is mostly reddish-brown or mahogany with black markings and two yellowish circles just behind the head. Adults grow to be a little longer than 3 inches. They have long, almost straight antennae and six legs which are lined with spines. They also have two wings on their entire back that are slightly longer than their body. Both male and female American cockroaches are able to fly.
Where Do American Cockroaches Live?
Normally these roaches live outside and prefer damp, warm areas such as those underneath mulch or inside flower beds. They are also quite numerous in sewer systems throughout many cities in the United States. Though they’d rather be outside, they can enter homes in search of food and water. Places inside a home you might find an American cockroach include kitchens, basements, bathrooms, and laundry rooms—all areas that tend to be warm and humid.
The German Cockroach (Blattella germanica)
German Cockroach Characteristics
German cockroaches are easy to identify by the two horizontal stripes located behind their heads. They are tan to light brown and grow to a length of about 13 to 16 millimeters. These roaches have long, almost straight antennae and six legs with spines. Though they have wings, they don’t often fly. It’s important to remember that younger German roaches are almost black with black stripes.
Female German cockroaches only need to mate one time, but then can reproduce for the rest of their lives. On average, they will produce an egg case, each containing 30 to 40 eggs, four to six times during the course of their lives.
Where Do German Cockroaches Live?
German cockroaches are most commonly found indoors, though they are able to live outdoors in tropical environments. Like their American counterparts, they also prefer areas in a home that are very warm and moist. Typically, these roaches are brought into a home inside cardboard boxes, bags, containers, used appliances, or other items. Once inside, they have no trouble moving from room to room (or between apartments) using pipes and plumbing.
The Asian Cockroach (Blattella asahinai)
Asian Cockroach Characteristics
The Asian cockroach is nearly identical to the German cockroach with a few key differences. Its wings are longer than the German cockroach, and Asian cockroaches are strong flyers that are attracted to light.
Where Do Asian Cockroaches Live?
Unlike the German cockroach, the Asian roach prefers to live outdoors and is usually found in tropical and subtropical climates. It was first introduced to the tropical climate of Florida in the late 1980s, but can now be found in several southern states. Commonly located around man-made structures, these cockroaches prefer garden beds, shaded areas, mulch, and leaf litter.
If found indoors, you are likely to find these roaches on lamps, televisions, and computer screens due to their affinity of light.
The Smokybrown Cockroach (Periplaneta fuliginosa)
Smokybrown Cockroach Characteristics
The smokybrown cockroach is, as you may have guessed, a smoky-brown color. Their heads appear shiny black with slightly curved antennae sticking out. They also have six legs that are lined with spines. Smokybrown roaches can grow to be around 38 millimeters and feature wings that extend beyond their bodies. These cockroaches are also good flyers.
Where Do Smokybrown Cockroaches Live?
Since they dehydrate easily, smokybrown roaches prefer very moist, warm areas where they are protected from the elements. They can be found in tree holes, under mulch, and around eaves and soffits.
Although these roaches prefer to eat decaying plant matter, they will eat anything available, including animal feces, dead trees or dead animals, and even their own young.
Call McCall for Professional Roach Control in Florida
Cockroaches are unsightly insects that can reproduce quickly, contaminate your food supply, and cause respiratory problems when they shed their skin (molt) inside your home. If you notice any of these roaches near you, don’t hesitate to get in touch with McCall service today.get in touch with McCall service today With expert roach control technicians and minimally invasive treatments, we can ensure these pests are eliminated from your home or business and stay out for good.