Pest Information - Roaches

There are over 4,000 species of roaches but only 12-14 are associated with humans. This site will focus on the roaches most commonly found in Hawaii. Learn about their Appearance, Habitat, Diet, Health Risks, and Reproduction.
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German Roach

German Roach

Scientific Name

Blattella germanica
AKA: Croton bug


The German cockroach is a small species of cockroach, measuring about 1/2" to 3/4" long. It is tan to light brown. It is the hardest pest cockroach to get rid of, and is the most troublesome in Hawaii.


German roaches can be found anywhere in the home but are most common in the kitchen, frequently inside cupboards, drawers, and electrical appliances. It is also the most sociable of the pest species and is often found in large groups. Like most cockroaches they are nocturnal, hiding during the day in cracks and crevices so small that they can easily be overlooked.


The German roach eats almost anything, is omnivorous, but they particularly like starchy foods like potatoes, rice and cereal, sugary foods, grease and meats.

Type of Damage

German roaches share the habit of other roach species of entering houses and contaminating food with excrement, regurgitated salivary fluid and spreading potentially harmful bacteria. In addition, many asthmatic individuals are allergic to cockroaches.

Health Risks

Their presence is primarily an aesthetic nuisance, however, members of this species are known to carry infectious bacteria known to cause food poisoning, dysentery, and diarrhea in humans. They have been implicated as a cause of allergic dermatitis and childhood asthma.

Life Cycle

From one female German cockroach there could be more than 100,000 cockroaches in your home by the end of one year!

Interesting Facts

Modern day German roaches came from Africa.