The Differences Between Oriental and American Cockroaches

Cockroaches in a clear container with food

Cockroaches are never particularly welcome guests, but are some worse than others? There are thousands of different types of cockroaches in the world! While that may seem like a scary number, take solace in knowing only about 69 are prevalent in the United States. Two of the most common cockroach types are Oriental and American cockroaches. These two are particularly common in Las Vegas. They may seem similar to the untrained eye, but there are a few key differences that set the two cockroach types apart. We’ve got the lowdown on differences and similarities between Oriental and American cockroaches!

American Cockroaches Are Immigrants

The American cockroach suggests these critters are born and bred here in the United States, but they came over on ships from Africa. American cockroaches known as Palmetto bugs are one of the most common breeds to see inside your home. Their large brown bodies have a defining light brown figure 8 just behind their head that distinguishes them from other roach breeds. Despite being bulky they can squeeze into tiny cracks to enter your home. They love warm, damp areas; American cockroaches frequently hang out under kitchen appliances. Like most cockroaches, this breed munches on organic matter. Their favorite takeout is whatever your leftovers are, so expect to see them flock to wherever there is food.

Water Bugs AKA the Oriental Cockroach

Las Vegas is a pretty dry area, but that does not stop Oriental cockroaches from thriving. Otherwise known as water bugs. Oriental cockroaches are a black, shiny bug frequently mistaken for a beetle. They love dark, humid areas and are seen outside at night. During the warm summer months, Oriental cockroaches will seek shelter inside your home. They’re drawn to wet areas such as dripping faucets on the side of a home. They’ll likely continue to head inside once finding a water source. They will dine on just about any organic matter they can get their hands on like garbage, human food, or even wet leaves.

All One Big Family: How the Oriental and American Cockroaches Are Related

Oriental and American cockroaches both come from the same ancestry. Due to this, they carry quite a few similarities. While their colors are different, both are primarily nocturnal. Both American and Oriental cockroaches breed by producing eggs en masse. The females lay eggs in dark places unlikely to be sought out by predators, such as the corners of cabinets. Both types of cockroaches eat organic matter allowing them to invade parts they can siphon nutrients from like your kitchen. Unfortunately, each cockroach type carries bacteria and viruses dangerous to human health, so if you have an infestation your pest control expert must take care of it quickly for you.

Differences Between Oriental and American Cockroaches

While there are quite a few similarities between Oriental and American cockroaches, there are even more differences. American cockroaches are significantly bigger and have wings that cover their entire back. By contrast, male Oriental cockroaches have wings that only extend about halfway down their back. Oriental cockroaches are more drawn to water whereas their American cousins want food and water equally. The good news is Oriental cockroaches are much slower moving than Americans! The bad news is both of them breed quickly, making it imperative you take care of any infestation immediately.

We’ve got your back no matter what type of cockroach you have! For more common pests and more pest-related tips, contact Dr. Death Pest Control!

Currently only servicing Henderson and Boulder City.

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