DESCRIPTION: The Oriental cockroach is dark reddish brown in color, so dark that it is sometimes referred to as the "Black Beetle" in Europe and some parts of the United States. When disturbed, it may run rapidly and adults may fly. Females are wingless, and males have wings. Female Oriental cockroaches can be distinguished from large nymphs by the wing stubs which have definite venation. The adult roach is about 1 inch long (some being reported as 1 1/4 inch in length) and immature cockroaches resemble adults except that they are wingless. Unlike other pest cockroaches, oriental cockroaches cannot climb up smooth surfaces (they lack sticky pads on their feet). Oriental cockroaches generally live in moist areas, but can survive in dry areas if they have access to water. They prefer cooler temperatures around 75 degrees Fahrenheit and can overwinter in protected areas outdoors where temperatures average 40 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit. These cockroaches are common in basements, crawl spaces, cracks and crevices of porches, foundations, and walkways adjacent to buildings. They feed on a wide variety of plant and animal material. The Oriental cockroach breeds well in unventilated crawl spaces or basements where humidity is high.
LIFE CYCLE: Females produce egg cases and may carry them protruding from the tip of the abdomen for about 30 hours. Egg cases are then generally glued to a surface in a hidden location, usually a warm sheltered spot where food will be available for emerging nymphs. Egg cases are 3/8 inch long, brown, and purse shaped. A full compliment of 16 eggs can be laid in the egg capsule, which consists of two rows of eight eggs each. Immature cockroaches emerge from egg cases in 6 to 8 weeks and require 6 to 12 months to mature. Adult cockroaches can live up to one year, during which females produce an average of 150 young. This cockroach prefers to feed on starchy foods but (like other roaches) will adapt to survive.
ELIMINATION: Cockroaches may enter houses via
sewer connections, under doors, around utility pipes, air ducts, or other openings in the
foundation. Applying an exterior barrier treatment around buildings is the best way
to stop the inward movement of this pest. Cockroach populations in basements can be
reduced by decreasing dampness and applying insecticides in cracks and crevices where
there is evidence of cockroach activity (presence of egg cases, dead cockroaches, brown
fecal smears). Wettable powder formulations (Demon WP, Cynoff WP) are usually the choice of
professionals. These formulations not only give three times more residual than
conventional pesticides, they also have no odor.