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German Cockroach (Blattella germanica)


Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the German Cockroach.


 Updated: 5/23/2018; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.InsectIdentification.org



  German Cockroach  
Picture of German-Cockroach
Picture of German-Cockroach Picture of German-Cockroach


The German Cockroach is a well-established import widely known for its efficiency in infesting human spaces.





Fast and brown, German Cockroaches are a familiar sight in urban areas. They have been in North America for over a century. Their nickname, "Croton bug", was coined in the late 1800's when they first began invading homes in New York after the Croton Reservoir started bringing additional water to the growing city. Their familiarity these days has led to most people addressing this particular species in general as 'cockroach'. They are dark brown with thin antennae. Legs are paler with spiky hairs. Their movements are fast and dartlike, tending to startle when they scurry. Adhesive pads on their feet allow them to walk vertically on smooth surfaces, even on glass. This allows them to climb walls and walk across ceilings without falling.

Smaller than American and Oriental cockroaches, German cockroaches are notorious household and industrial pests. Infesting houses, restaurants, warehouses, and other institutions with food pantries, they come out at night or in the dark, scavenging for whatever food products they can find. They usually hide behind stoves, in bathroom vents and plumbing, and under sinks during the day, but if they are seen in large numbers actively scavenging in daylight, it is a sign that a severe infestation is probable. A large population like that would require a professional exterminator to eradicate.

Several generations of German Cockroach can be born in one year, with approximately 30 nymphs in every egg capsule. Females are darker than males and may carry an egg capsule at the end of their abdomen. It is shaped like a grain of rice or tic-tac candy. This capsule is left near a food and water source so the emerging nymphs (smaller versions of adults) can immediately start feeding after they hatch.
Basic Information
Common Name: German Cockroach
Other Name(s): Croton bug
Scientific Name: Blattella germanica
Category: Cockroach


General Identification
Size (Adult; Length): 13mm to 16mm (0.51in to 0.62in)
Colorwheel Graphic
Identifying Colors: brown; black
Additional Descriptors: fast, flying, hairs




Taxonomic Hierarchy
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Blattodea
Family: Blattellidae
Genus: Blattella
Species: germanica




Territorial Reach (A-to-Z)
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed below as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections below indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
Canadian National Flag Graphic
Alberta
British Columbia
Manitoba
New Brunswick
Newfoundland and Labrador
Nova Scotia
Ontario
Prince Edward Island
Quebec
Saskatchewan
Mexican National Flag Graphic
Mexico


Territorial Area Map (Visual Reference Guide)
The map below showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the German Cockroach may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data can be useful in seeing concentrations of a particular species over the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some species are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America.
Alaska  
Hawaii  
Prince Edward Is.  
State of Alabama graphic
State of Arizona graphic
State of Arkansas graphic
State of California graphic
State of Colorado graphic
State of Delware graphic
State of Florida graphic
State of Georgia graphic
State of Idaho graphic
State of Illinois graphic
State of Indiana graphic
State of Iowa graphic
State of Kansas graphic
State of Kentucky graphic
State of Louisiana graphic
State of Maine graphic
State of Maryland graphic
State of Michigan graphic
State of Minnesota graphic
State of Mississippi graphic
State of Missouri graphic
State of Montana graphic
State of Nebraska graphic
State of Nevada graphic
State of New England graphic
State of New Jersey graphic
State of New Mexico graphic
State of New York graphic
State of North Carolina graphic
State of North Dakota graphic
State of Ohio graphic
State of Oklahoma graphic
State of Oregon graphic
State of Pennsylvania graphic
State of South Carolina graphic
State of South Dakota graphic
State of Tennessee graphic
State of Texas graphic
State of Utah graphic
State of Virginia graphic
State of Washington graphic
State of West Virginia graphic
State of Wisconsin graphic
State of Wyoming graphic
Canadian territory of Alberta graphic
Canadian territory of British Columbia graphic
Canadian territory of Manitoba graphic
Canadian territory of New Brunswick graphic
Canadian territory of Newfoundland and Labrador graphic
Canadian territory of Ontario graphic
Canadian territory of Quebec graphic
Canadian territory of Saskatchewan graphic
Territory map graphic of the country of Mexico
Contiguous United States shape map layer graphic


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