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Cockroaches

American cockroach (Periplaneta americana)    

Biology:

The American cockroach is the largest species that occurs here. Body length is 28-40 mm. This insect is light to medium reddish brown in colour with rust-yellow bands on the. Both sexes have wings and are capable of gliding flight.
The egg packet containing 15-20 eggs is carried around for a few days, then fixed adhesively in a protected place and covered if possible. The young insects hatch out after approx. 1-2 months. The adult life span is relatively long at 1 to 1.5 years.
The American cockroach is highly thermophilic and requires high temperature and humidity levels. It is therefore relatively rare here, found mostly in zoological gardens or greenhouses where these conditions obtain.

Damage:

Cockroaches are omnivorous, eating anything they can get to. Wastes, stored products, foodstuffs of all kinds, faeces and materials such as leather, textiles and paper are all included in their diet. They prefer soft substances that contain water. The American cockroach causes major damage in greenhouses by feeding on young plants, blossoms and fruits.
With their non-selective feeding habits, cockroaches represent a major health hazard due to contamination of foodstuffs and transmission of disease-causing pathogens. They may transmit anthrax, salmonella, tuberculosis and parasitic worms.
These animals can be considered a major health threat.

 

Oriental cockroach (Blatta orientalis)      

Biology:

The Oriental cockroach is also known as the kitchen cockroach. It grows to a length of 20-28 mm. The males are dark chestnut brown and have fully developed wings somewhat shorter than the abdomen.
The females are nearly black and have only small rudimentary wings. The carry their egg packets containing about 16 eggs for 2-5 days, then leave them lying at random. The larvae hatch after 2-3 months and require from six months to two years, or longer, to develop into adults depending on the temperature.

Damage:

Cockroaches are omnivorous, eating anything they can get to. Wastes, stored products, foodstuffs of all kinds, faeces and materials such as leather, textiles and paper are all included in their diet. They prefer soft substances that contain water.
With their non-selective feeding habits, cockroaches represent a major health hazard due to contamination of foodstuffs and transmission of disease-causing pathogens. They may transmit anthrax, salmonella, tuberculosis and parasitic worms.
These animals can be considered a major health threat.

German cockroach (Blatella germanica)    

Biology:

The German or house cockroach is the most frequent species here. It is 10-15 mm long, yellowish brown with two lengthwise black stripes on the neck plate. Although both sexes have long wings, they are flightless. The female deposits 20 - 40 eggs in an egg packet, which she then carries about with her until shortly before the young hatch out. The dark-coloured young start out about the size of a pinhead and are very similar to the adults except for the still undeveloped wings. Their development into adults takes about 2-3 months.
All cockroaches are fond of dark, moist hiding-places. The pronounced activity peak of these animals during the night and twilight hours explains why they often go unnoticed for long periods. They are frequently found in commercial kitchens, bakeries, shopping malls, slaughterhouses, restaurants, swimming pools, saunas and hospitals. The German cockroach can tolerate relatively long starvation periods (longer than one month).

Damage:

Cockroaches are omnivorous, eating anything they can get to. Wastes, stored products, foodstuffs of all kinds, faeces and materials such as leather, textiles and paper are all included in their diet. They prefer soft substances that contain water.
With their non-selective feeding habits, cockroaches represent a major health hazard due to contamination of foodstuffs and transmission of disease-causing pathogens. They may transmit anthrax, salmonella, tuberculosis and parasitic worms.
These animals can be considered a major health threat.

 

Brown-banded cockroach (Supella longipalpa)    

Biology:

The brown-banded cockroach is approx. 11 mm long, medium brown and with a round black spot on the neck plate. It is otherwise very similar to the German cockroach. The females have short wings, the males long wings, with two light-coloured bands across them. The egg packets containing approx. 14 eggs are deposited in furniture cracks, etc. as soon as they are finished. Depending on the temperature, it takes from 7 weeks to several months for the larvae to hatch. At temperatures around 28C, the ensuing larval development into an adult takes approx. 3 months.
The brown-banded cockroach is highly thermophilic and has been unintentionally introduced here in recent years from the US and the Mediterranean region.

Damage:

Habitus and damage are the same as for the German cockroach.

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