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Oriental Cockroaches: Everything You Need to Know!


Reading Time: 5 minutes

Among the many types of cockroaches that grace our world, oriental cockroaches, also known as Blatta orientalis, are one of the most fascinating. As a result of originating from the mighty Black Sea, those roaches grew to love dark waters and damp locations, and they’re often called water bugs. So if you want to learn more about oriental roaches, you’re in the right place!

We’ll tell you everything you need to know about oriental cockroaches, including their habits, environments, and appearances! You have to read on.

What Do Oriental Cockroaches Look Like?

Oriental roaches, also commonly called black beetle cockroaches, are about one inch tall. They’re smaller than other cockroach species, like American cockroaches. Interestingly, male and female oriental roaches don’t look alike, although they have the same dark brown color.

To tell the difference, you should look at their wings. Females have large wing pads instead of actual wings, and they don’t use them. The pads only cover their bodies. Additionally, they’re taller and thinner than males. On the other hand, males are short, with wings covering most of their abdomens. However, despite the presence of wings, both genders can’t fly.

Oriental Cockroaches Diet

Since oriental cockroaches are omnivores, they can feed on any food, ranging from garbage and decaying organic matter to leftover people’s food. They specifically like starchy food leftovers, but mostly, oriental cockroaches eat decaying plants and animals. That’s why they’re most likely to enter houses with outdoor plants.

Oriental Cockroaches Habits

Living Habits

Oriental cockroaches, like most cockroach species, prefer living in damp areas. Therefore, you’ll most likely find them near sinks, toilets, and exposed pipes. However, you may also encounter them in wet and cool areas, for instance, damp basements, crawl spaces, and moist gutters.

Moreover, those roaches have the same instinct that most insects have, hiding. As a result, they like staying in flower beds and leaf piles.

Regarding weather, oriental cockroaches are mostly found outdoors during summer. In winter, they seek refuge in closed spaces like sewers and houses. The main reason they do this is to look for water. Interestingly, cockroaches can live for up to a month without feeding. However, they can hardly live for two weeks without water.

Reproducing Habits

The females in this cockroach species typically live for less than 180 days, and they can produce as many as eight egg cases each time. Each case typically contains 16 eggs, and a female oriental cockroach will carry those capsules for nearly 30 hours before leaving them in a safe haven till they hatch.

Nymphs usually hatch after sixty days, and they take six to 12 months to reach complete maturity. Nymphs’ appearances differ from mature cockroaches as they have a pale tan color. Moreover, they shed their skin up to ten times before they reach full maturity, which is often during the fall season according to their life cycle.

After maturing, oriental cockroaches’ life expectancy ranges from six to 12 months. Female oriental cockroaches tend to produce up to 200 eggs during their lifetime.

Do Oriental Cockroaches Bite?

Like most cockroaches, oriental cockroaches rarely bite humans. They only do it in the rare case of a huge infestation where food is in short supply. However, you don’t have to worry because an oriental cockroach bite is mostly painless and hardly noticeable.

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Are Oriental Cockroaches Dangerous?

While an oriental cockroach on its own isn’t a dangerous pest, it might be if it moved from the sewer pipes into your house. Since oriental cockroaches like to feed on garbage like most roach species, they often live in filthy spaces where pathogens and bacteria are dominant. As a result, they may transfer some of those bacteria into your food and on your house surfaces.

Mostly, oriental cockroaches are known to transfer salmonella, E.coli, dysentery, and most food poisoning bacteria through their legs. As a result, if they contaminate your kitchen, you and your family may be susceptible to food sickness.

In addition, recent studies showed that cockroach allergens might adversely affect children to the extent that they may cause asthma and allergic reactions. The allergens are mostly found in secretions, droppings, and bodies of dead roaches.

Oriental Cockroach Infestation

Signs Of An Oriental Cockroach Infestation


First of all, oriental cockroaches communicate with each other and their environment by giving off a strong odor. As a result, you can detect an infestation by noticing oriental cockroaches’ smell. For example, if you detect any musty odor in your kitchen or bathroom, you likely have an oriental cockroach problem in your house.


Second, those roaches are nocturnal. Thus, they mostly move at night. Accordingly, if you spot them during daylight, you might be dealing with an entire infestation. Finally, seeing any dark brown or reddish-brown eggs lying around is a vital sign of an oriental cockroach infestation. The eggs are typically eight to nine mm in length, so you need to look closely.

How To Get Rid Of Oriental Cockroaches

Trying to eliminate oriental cockroaches is a bit challenging, but no worries! We’re here to help. But, first, you should clean your home efficiently and keep it sanitized.

It’d be best if you focus on wet areas like bathrooms and kitchens, especially under sinks. Moreover, you should ventilate moist spaces in your house because this is where they love to stay.

Second, since oriental cockroaches like to invade houses through cracks and holes in the foundation, you should seal them to prevent their entrance. Finally, in this case, your best friend will be the insecticide. It’d help if you spray it anywhere where roaches are found, most notably around your garbage cans.

However, those steps may still not entirely rid you of cockroaches. The main reason for this is that, while insecticides can efficiently kill adult oriental cockroaches, nymphs can stay around for months.

Consequently, if you do all those steps and the roaches are still everywhere, you should get professional help. Then, they’ll form a treatment plan to kill oriental cockroaches.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do Oriental Cockroaches Enter Houses?

An oriental cockroach may sneakily get inside your house through drains and pipes since those critters mostly hang around in sewers. Also, if you keep outdoor plants, you’re most likely to have cockroaches in your house.

What Rebels Oriental Cockroaches?

Those water bugs absolutely hate the smell of garlic, onion, and cayenne powder. They successfully drive roaches away if sprinkled around the house. However, since those smells are annoying, it isn’t a convenient solution.

Should I Worry if I See One Oriental Cockroach?

Unfortunately, yes, you should worry. Although oriental cockroaches may wander around alone, it’s doubtful. As a result, if you see an oriental cockroach sneaking around, you should look for signs of an infestation like egg capsules and odd smells.

Do Oriental Roaches Get Scared of Humans?

Like most cockroaches, oriental roaches may get scared of humans and move around fanatically. The main reason for this is that they’re sneaky insects who like to hide. In other terms, they hate being seen. As a result, if they sense your presence, they’ll quickly look for a way out. Luckily, those black beetles don’t use their wings, so they won’t manically fly in your face.

To Wrap Up

Oriental cockroaches are sneaky pests who like to hide around in moist areas. While they are mostly an outdoor species, they can enter your house from sewer pipes. They aren’t necessarily harmful, but they can taint food through their legs, which can cause diseases. As a result, you should keep your house clean of them.

We hope you have enough information about oriental cockroaches now!

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History of the Cockroach: The Complete Guide!
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