The American Cockroach Blattaria: Blattidae, Periplaneta americana

The American Cockroach Blattaria: Blattidae, Periplaneta americana

The American roach, also known as the American native roach, is the biggest of the common cockroaches that you will find in your home.   The American cockroach can range in length from about one inch to an inch and a half.

While all roaches may look alike at first glance, the American roach is distinctive. The American native cockroach is distinctive because they are reddish brown in color and they have a yellow band or edge on their body behind their head.  This roach is the only type that has the yellow band behind their neck and also has the yellow band behind their head.


The lifecycle of this cockroach is quite rapid and impressive, like other cockroaches.  Females will produce egg cases and then carry them around on the tip of their abdomen for a few days.  After at least two days have passed, the female will then hide the egg case, which is about 3/8 inch long, brown, and rectangular in shape.  The cockroaches will not hatch for another 6 to 8 weeks after the female has hidden the egg case with care.  Adults will take up to a year to mature, and females can produce up to 150 baby cockroaches during their life!


The American roach is typically seen in damp areas, but can be seen anywhere that there is access to water.  This type of roach is often seen around the perimeter of houses, sewers, basements, crawl spaces, porches, and even in your kitchen cabinets!  Because the American roach is an omnivore, it can survive just about anywhere and will feed on just about anything.

The comfortable temperature for an American roach is about 84 degrees Fahrenheit.  When temperatures are cooler, these roaches will move indoors through sewer connections, under doors, through crawl spaces, around utility pipes, air ducts, and cracks in the foundations of homes.  When the temperatures rise, cockroaches can be seen more often outside on porches, and even on walkways.

If you want to limit the number of American roaches that are attracted to your home, you need to limit hiding spaces.  When you limit hiding spaces and feeding sources, you'll eliminate the attractiveness to cockroaches.  Filling in cracks in the foundation, putting covers over crawl spaces, and mesh netting over sewer connections will help you avoid inviting the American roach into your home.

While the American native cockroach will not typically destroy your property, it should not be a welcome guest in your home.  Roaches can carry a whole host of diseases that can get everyone in your home sick.  The best way to deal with the American roach is to avoid it altogether.

Control Measures

Roach Control Products


  1. Spot sprays. Use tempo SC ultra at the rate of 16ml per gallon. (Use the measuring cup on the bottle.) Treat all base boards the kitchen and other areas that you see the roaches.
  2. Roach Traps. These are good non chemical control for those home owners that prefer to keep their homes chemically free.
  3. Baits.  Gel Baits like Maxforce FC Roach killer and Advion Cockroach Gel Bait allow the bait to be placed in cracks and crevices away from small animals and children
  4. Boric Acid.
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