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Cockroaches are among the most familiar and unwanted of the insects we face. The cockroach is not considered a social insect, but they commonly occur in groups. The cockroach will feed on just about anything that’s of nutritive value. However disgusting they may be, the cockroach is among the most important pests of households and businesses in terms of their threat.

Cockroaches are a nuisance we almost all face, but they are known to be capable of carrying many common disease pathogens as well as causing allergic reactions in many people. The more common of these disease pathogens include bacteria which can lead to food poising, diarrhea and dysentery, toxoplasmosis and hepatitis B. Other diseases now of minor importance in the United States include cholera, plague and polio.

German Cockroaches

German cockroaches are light reddish brown with two dark stripes behind the head. Male cockroaches are usually lighter in color than the female. German cockroaches grow to be 1/2 – 5/8 inch long. German cockroaches have two long sweeping, segmented antennae. Like all cockroaches, they have 6 legs. German cockroaches have wings, even though they don’t typically fly. They do like to run and they are able to move pretty fast. 

Are German Cockroaches Dangerous?

Just because German cockroaches do not bite humans doesn’t mean they aren’t a threat to humans. German cockroaches carry and spread bacteria and human pathogens. They most often are the source of food contamination in restaurants and residential kitchens. German cockroaches pick up germs on their legs when crawling through sewage and other contaminated matter then carry these germs onto counters, tables, and other food preparation areas. German cockroaches are known to cause serious allergic reactions and asthma attacks. The risk of these reactions increases with younger children and babies. 

German Cockroaches Habitat  

German cockroaches like warm humid places like kitchens and bathrooms. They will spread to any place there is food or water available. German cockroaches can fit in small cracks and crevices where they hide unseen during the day. With heavy infestations, they can be seen during the daytime. German cockroaches can easily be brought into homes and or commercial kitchens inside of boxes, grocery bags, used appliances, and even electronics like TV’s and cable boxes. German cockroaches prefer the indoors, but can survive warmer months outside. 

American Cockroaches

American cockroaches, also called water bugs in the South, are usually reddish brown with a light tan almost yellow figure 8 on the back of its head. Adult American cockroaches can reach about 1 1/4 to 2 1/8 inch in length. They have 6 spiny legs and 2 sweeping antennae. Both male and female American cockroaches have wings and are able to fly short distances. 

Are American Cockroaches Dangerous?

American cockroaches can bite, but rarely do if they do so. Like other species of cockroaches, the American cockroach can carry many common diseases. American cockroaches are known more for being a nuisance pest than a pest that is dangerous to humans. Infestations of American cockroaches are uncommon. American cockroaches can be controlled through routine pest control service.

American Cockroach Habitat

American cockroaches are primarily an outdoor insect. They are commonly found inside homes, storage building, and other structures. In the south, American cockroaches can easily be found under mulch beds, leaf piles, sewer pipes, and other shady, humid places. When American cockroaches enter a home they will typically make their way to the kitchen or bathroom where their is water or food. Because of their size they are easily seen scurrying from dark places. Many times American cockroach droppings are mistaken for mouse droppings. If you find droppings it is important to have them identified by a professional who can direct you into the proper treatment for the pest you have. 

Smoky Brown Cockroaches

Smoky brown cockroaches are easily identified by its uniform dark brown-mahogany color. The thorax of the smoky brown cockroach is dark and shiny. Smoky brown cockroaches grow to be 1 1/4 – 1 3/8 inch long. Smoky brown cockroaches have two long almost straight antennae and 6 legs. Smoky brown cockroaches have wings that are longer than their body and are known as strong flyers. 

Are Smoky Brown Cockroaches Dangerous?

Like other species of cockroaches, the smoky brown cockroach can carry many common diseases. Smoky brown cockroaches are known more for being a nuisance pest than a pest that is dangerous to humans. Infestations of smoky brown cockroaches are uncommon. 

Smoky Brown Cockroach habitat 

Smoky brown cockroaches require frequent access to water or they will dry out quickly. Smoky browns typically enter a home in search of a source of water. They are most commonly found around decaying organic material like mulch beds, wooded areas and gutters full of leaves. Homeowners may notice smoky brown infestations in attics, chimneys and cabinets in kitchens and bathrooms. 

Oriental Cockroaches

Oriental cockroaches are often referred to as “water bugs." They are dark black and shiny or glossy. The oriental cockroach grows to approximately 1 inch long. While the male has wings, it doesn’t fly. The female has no wings, only wing pads that shield the upper segments of her body. The oriental cockroach has 6 spiny legs and long flowing antennae. 

Are Oriental Cockroaches Dangerous?

Like other species of cockroaches, the oriental cockroach can carry many common diseases. Oriental cockroaches are known more for being a nuisance pest than a pest that is dangerous to humans.

Oriental Cockroach Habitat 

Oriental cockroaches like moist, damp places that are away from humans. Oriental cockroaches may enter a home in search of a source of water. They are most commonly found around decaying organic mater in sewers, damp basements, drains, and other damp places. Oriental cockroaches can be found outside under mulch, damp leaf piles, under bushes and other damp areas. 


If you have a cockroach problem or infestation or would like us to help prevent them in you home we strongly encourage you to contact a professional pest control company such as Grand Slam Pest Control. Some species of cockroaches can be very difficult to get ride of. Roaches often require the combined efforts of us and the homeowner to incorporate the use of insecticides as well as cleaning of the property to help remove conducive conditions for their breeding. DIY treatments, such as the use of insecticides, can lead to negative effects on the environment and health concerns if used improperly. Contact us TODAY to schedule your free consultation and estimate.

Call Us Today!! 832-299-4991

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