All American pest roaches--like most American humans--were
Roaches wear their skeletons on the outside of their bodies.
What if you skinned your knee and white blood came out? If you're a cockroach,
no big deal. Cockroaches bleed white blood.
Roach mouths work sideways. Try it sometime.
Roaches use their feelers as noses.
The world's largest roach is six inches long with a one-foot wingspan.
The world's largest roach lives in South America.
Some roaches are tiny and live in ant nests.
Tropical cockroaches are often brightly colored green, yellow, red.
If you were to collect one of every species of cockroach found in the world,
you'd need a lot of jars to put them in. There are some 5,000 species of cockroaches
Most species of cockroaches live in the tropics.
Cockroaches have six hairy legs. The tiny hairs found on each leg give them
their sense of touch.
Cockroaches have 6 legs and least 18 knees!!!
Many cockroaches can fly and have beautiful diaphanous--or see-through--wings.
Tinkerbelle would be jealous.
Cockroach kidneys look like a bunch
of writhing snakes. (Yak!)
Pregnant for life? It doesn't sound like much fun, but some female cockroaches
mate once and are pregnant for the rest of their lives.
Roaches live all over the world, including the North and South Poles. In extremely
cold places, however, they survive by moving in with humans.
No food for a month--not even a crumb? Roaches can go without eating for a month
but will only live a week without water. If humans worked the same way popular diet programs such as the
Medifast diet or
no carb diets probably wouldn't be as popular as they are now. Think of the
monthly savings you'd have just from lower grocery bills!
It's hard to sneak up on a roach. They have one great big nerve connecting their
tails to their heads, alerting them to danger from behind.
Roaches have faster reflexes than humans--even faster than Michael Jordan's.
Roaches can swim and hold their breath for 40 minutes. But they breathe through
their sides--not their noses--which makes it tough to come up for air.
Do you run away when your big brother takes off his smelly tennis shoes? Not
roaches. They recognize family and friends by their distinctive odors.
You outgrow your
clothes; roaches outgrow their skeletons. As roaches grow,
they shed their external skeletons several times a year.
No, it's not an albino. If you see a white cockroach, it has just shed its skin.
A cockroach that has just shed its skin is white with black eyes. (Just call
it Casper the Cockroach.) After eight hours, however, it will regain its regular
American cockroaches are speedy little creatures. They can run up to three miles
in an hour.
Ever wonder how cockroaches climb walls? They are equipped with a set of little
claws on their feet designed for that very purpose.
Male cockroaches weigh less than female cockroaches, and males can fly and flee
Pest cockroaches are native to western Asia and northern Africa.
Cockroaches were carried all over the world in wooden ship. They were the sailors
and stowaways of the insect world. Sir Francis Drake once captured a ship which
was overrun with millions of roaches.
The H.M.S. "Bounty" was so infested with cockroaches that Captain William Bligh,
a British admiral known for his mean temper, disinfected the entire ship with
Cockroaches in your
gourmet dinner? Maybe not as a main dish, but they have
been used in sauces, condiments and as appetizers.
Don't complain next time you have to swallow cough syrup. You could be taking
a dose of cockroaches instead! Processed cockroaches have been used to cure
illnesses and physical disorders for centuries.
More cockroach tea, anyone? Brewed from cockroaches, this tea has been used
to treat dropsy--a kind of sickness or inflammation.
Next time you have trouble going pee, and your urinary tract just doesn't want
to go with the flow, why not try dried and powdered Oriental cockroaches? They
are said to make a dandy diuretic.
Eat too much pizza? Cotton candy? Thanksgiving dinner? Some people eat cockroaches
fried in oil and garlic as a cure for indigestion.
If you're ever stung by a sting ray, remember to mash up a mess of cockroaches
to apply as a poultice to the wound.
The cockroach was once a guest of honor in European homes, and it was customary
to release them in new dwellings.
Some people develop allergies to cockroaches, including skin rashes and respiratory
problems, such as a condition similar to asthma.
A cockroach family tree would be mighty big and long! Cockroaches are thought
to have originated during the Carboniferous era, which ended 280 million years
ago. They have been abundant ever since and are some of the most primitive winged
Soft food moves through a cockroach's
gut in 48 hours.
A vampire's dream: blood that sloshes around freely in a body.
Roaches' blood does just that. They have no blood vessels to speak of. (Though
cockroaches are probably too small for your average vampire to bother with.)
A cockroach heart is nothing but a simple tube with valves. The tube can pump
blood backwards and forwards in the insect. The heart can even stop moving without
harming the roach.
Female roaches produce an odor, called pheromone, that attracts males and drives
When a male cockroach is interested in a female, he gives her a wrapped gift
and takes her out to dinner--well, sort of. Males transfer sperm to females
in a nice, "gift wrapped" package called a spermatophore. Some males cover the
package in a protein-rich wrapping that she can eat (yum!) to obtain nutrients
to raise her young.
The Headless Horseman? Er... Horseroach? For a while anyway. A cockroach can
live a week without its head. It only dies because without a mouth, it can't
Cockroaches are supreme couch potatoes. They spend 75 percent of their time
How can you tell if a cockroach is resting or trying to remember what it came
into the room for? Resting roaches point their antennae up and forward, and
at about a 60 degree angle from one another.
Cockroaches can crawl into some astonishingly small spaces. Young roaches need
only a crevice .5 mm wide--or a space as thin as a dime. Adult males can squeeze
into a space of 1.6 mm--or the size of a quarter. Pregnant females need the
most space of all to hide: 4.5 mm or a space as wide as two stacked nickels.
Some female roaches incubate their egg cases in their bodies until they are
ready to hatch. These babies stay with their mothers a day or two after they
Picture a cockroach in a winter parka and mittens. Pest cockroaches can
withstand freezing temperature of 32 degrees but will die if the temperature
goes much below that. They're better off if they have a chance to become "used"
to the cold.