Summary: You might have known that cockroaches can survive for a week with its head cut off, but did you know that the cockroach species might be able to predict earthquakes? Find out more interesting cockroach facts.
The cockroach species has a nasty reputation. They are known to spread disease by carrying contaminants on their bodies after crawling through sewage or other waste. Seeing one scurry across a kitchen floor can be quite startling. People do not want them in their homes and will hire an exterminator to perform pest control. However, cockroaches are an important part of the world's ecosystem. They eat a lot of organic waste and they provide a food source for larger animals. Here is some more info I have found about cockroaches.
• There are 5,000 species of cockroach. Only about 30 of these species are know to be commonly found in human homes.
• Most cockroach species are found in the tropics.
• Different behaviors are hardwired in nerve groupings throughout a cockroach's body so that they don't necessarily need their brain to perform actions such as walking or breathing.
• Cockroaches don't have blood vessels like a mammal does, and their blood is not used to carry oxygen. Their blood is usually white or clear in color. The cockroach's blood is not really pumped by their heart, either. It kind of sloshes around the cockroach's body.
• Cockroaches become more active during earthquakes.
• Cockroaches can walk up walls because of many small hairs on their feet that can create suction.
• Large cockroaches are more likely to wander around than small cockroaches.
• Cockroaches can live for a month without food, and a week without water.
• Cockroaches can live for a week after their head has been cut off. This is because their breathing is not regulated by their brain and because they do not lose much blood because they don't have blood pressure like a mammal. They will eventually die of dehydration.
• Female cockroaches prefer weaker males over dominant males when they mate. The dominant males must fight for the females to prevent them from mating with weaker males. This seems to go against Darwin's theory. Research has shown that dominant males often injure the female during mating, but the females will produce more offspring when mating with the dominant males.
• Female cockroaches sometimes mate once and stay pregnant for life.
• Cockroaches usually have three knees per leg for a total of eighteen knees.
• The cockroach has lots of hairs on its legs which give it the sense of touch.
• Cockroaches often die if they land on their backs in human environments. In the wild there is often leaf litter or debris around to which the cockroach can grab on to if it becomes overturned. On a flat floor with nothing around it is much harder for the roach to right itself. Also, pesticides that are sprayed in homes often affect an insect's nervous system and cause muscle spasms. The roach might flip itself over accidentally and be unable to coordinate itself to turn right side up.
• The cockroach's antennae are a little longer than the length of its body. It uses the antennae to navigate, usually trying to stay in close proximity to a wall when it is inside.
• The cockroach antennae have between 150 and 170 segments each.
• The mouthparts of cockroaches chew sideways.
• Cockroaches can sense danger coming from behind them because of a nerve that runs the entire length of their bodies.
• A cockroach can run up to three miles per hour. That is fast for something so small.
• When cockroaches run they have three legs on the ground at any given time.
• The cockroach is the world's fastest turner. The cockroach can change directions up to twenty five times in a single second.
• The cockroach can survive at freezing temperatures.
• The cockroach can survive for forty minutes underwater.
• Cockroaches spend 75% of their time resting.
• The largest cockroach is six inches long and has a wingspan of one foot.
• The movement of cockroaches has been studied to create robots that mimic them. The robots are very effective in crossing rough terrain. These robots might someday be used for surveillance purposes to go into battle zones or dangerous locations.
• Japanese scientists have been able to attach electrodes to the legs of cockroaches so that they can control their movement. The cockroaches might one day be fitted with micro-cameras and be used for surveillance purposes.
Hate them as we might, cockroaches are amazing.
12 Aug 2009, 13:05
this morning i found a roach that my cats had brought me half dead on its
back. the stomach is dark brown with about 5 light brown stripes. i cant
see the top so i cant tell u wat it looks like from that view. it probably
came from the garage. its about 1 1/2 inches not including the antenae...
wat kind is it?
14 Aug 2009, 13:44
We went on vacation last week & rented a cabin. We found 2
cockroaches...one was laying an egg. Of course we freaked out & started
shaking all of our clothes/bags out & left (we had stayed 2 nights already
before discovering this). Once home, we washed EVERYTHING! Of couse now a
little jumpy at any sight of an insect. This morning I found a little
brownish bug walking very fast across my bathroom countertop. I grabbed it
with a tissue & put it in a container. It's only about 1/8" long. (Long &
slender) The back shell is hard looking with small "ridges" from head to
tail-end. Is this a baby roach???? Could he have somehow brought an egg
home in our stuff & it hatched?? Please tell me I'm just crazy & jumping
to conclusions!!!!! We keep a VERY clean house...kind of a clean freak.
Also, what is the best "trap"?? Like an ant trap??
15 Aug 2009, 11:35
living on the gulf coast of mississippi, i've dealt with tons of roaches.
we have a saying, "for every roach you see, seven are hiding in the wall."
roaches need water, food, and shelter - in that order, just like every
living creature. address those issues and "bye, bye" roaches... mostly...
plus poison helps! put 100% boric acid (powdered, commonly available) along
cracks, corners, door and window seals, etcetera. roaches will seek shelter
in your home during the rainy season. put a mothball in any sealed boxes or
bags (just one works fine!). dispose of excess cardboard and paper. clean
moderately well. and, remember, roaches are just bugs. they probably would
eat a dead person, but they are no real harm to the living.
24 Aug 2009, 18:13
I live in NYC, down in the village. I've been very lucky so far not to have
any roach problems before. Unfortunately this morning and another time 2
weeks ago, I saw a large roach-looking bug on my floor in the same spot
both times. The bug was about 1 1/2 - 2 inches long, dark in color. Both
times it was near my AC unit, which is against the wall. Do you think its
an oriental roach? and if so, how can i stop them from coming? there was a
leak in the apartment above me last month which trickled down my wall. they
since fixed the wall, and replastered. do you think this is the source of
the problem? i put down bait a few weeks ago. will this help? My super says
its a waterbug, which i think is a nice way of saying huge roach. im SOO
grossed out, especially because my roommate and i are super super clean.
thanks so much!
15 Oct 2009, 01:38
what is the life span of cockroach?
10 Nov 2009, 13:14
We just moved into our new home and the lady that lived there before
didn’t stay their a lot when I moved in I went down stairs to look at the
drain that the washer drains into and there were 4 or 5 baby roaches in the
water crawling out I killed them and went to the store (home depot) and got
2 huge jugs of roach killer. I sprayed the entire basement, outside and
every drain around that I could find. I was putting the bbq pit and other
items down stairs last night and saw 1 dead baby roach. None in the drain
and this morning I woke up to my kitten eating a baby dead roach in my bed
room. Should I call an exterminator or should I wait?
10 Nov 2009, 20:12
Is mothball any good to keep cockroach away from your home
05 May 2010, 17:54
i found a brown bug about the size of a 5p it had hard to notice wings, no
anntenae or no spiny legs it was in my bedroom in the middle of the day and
it didnt seem to bothered about my presence ive not seen any more neither
have i seen anything in my kitchen is it a cockroach?
31 May 2010, 14:41
were haveing problem with large roch looking bugs.it looks to be a
about two(2 inches long)its not a pallmento bug
16 Oct 2010, 15:48
i hate all bugs
05 Jan 2011, 21:06
We have alott Of Roch in my House but before we Brought a Mini. Ref. it
start to join as a Group . also I Dont know where stink Bug comee to My
23 Jan 2011, 10:33
How long can cockroaches survive freezing temperatures? My son lived in a
infested place, moved his furniture to storage for 2 months now. We live in
Mn. and it has been below zero for most of Jan. Is it safe to assume the
bugs are dead and he can safely move his furniture to his new place without
the bugs moving in too.
Ask the Exterminator
23 Jan 2011, 12:08
talks about bed bugs, but the article applies to most insects.
05 Jun 2011, 00:11
how fast does a palmetto bug grow?
Ask the Exterminator
05 Jun 2011, 08:22
American cockroaches molt from six to fourteen times. Complete development
from egg to adult is about 600 days.
08 Aug 2012, 13:01
Last night I found a small bug crawling in my bathroom and I'm freaking out
that it may be a cockroach my husband thinks I'm over reacting because he
says I say most Bugs like crickets and others are cockroaches. I found a
pic of a similar insect which I can email but I'm just super terrified of
what this insect will be. If I can hear back ASAP I would be forever
13 Dec 2012, 20:46
I think I saw a cockroach not sure if it was an actual cockroach it was
like a litish brown and skinny I've never seen any cocaroaches in my house
so im really not sure what it is please help it was in my laundry room on
the table of towels