Family: Blattidae Characteristics: Generally two pairs of wings, although these may be reduced or even absent; forewings have well developed veins and tend to be hardened, they overlap down the mid-dorsal line; membranous hindwings are folded below forewings; long whip-like, many-segmented antennae; omnivorous, with mouth parts adapted for biting; tarsi, 5-segmented; incomplete metamorphosis, with egg and nymph stages.
German Cockroach (Blattella germanica) • Adult, 10-15mm long • Colour, yellowish-brown with two longitudinal dark marks on pronotum • Wings well developed in both sexes • Can readily climb rough and polished vertical surfaces
American Cockroach (Periplaneta americana) • Adult, 28-44mm long • Colour, red-brown with yellow border around pronotum • No yellow submarginal stripes on forewings • Last segment of cerci, twice as long as wide
Areas where found: Cockroaches are common in commercial premises associated with the production or handling of food. Also in public buildings and domestic premises eg apartment blocks. Gregarious and nocturnal, they spend the day hiding in cracks and crevices around such areas as sinks, drains, cookers, the backs of cupboards and in refrigerator motor compartments. They especially favour buildings with service ducts and complex plumbing installations. Infestations may be introduced as egg cases or adults in incoming laundry, on raw materials, in crates and packaging, or arise as the insects enter buildings via such routes as drains or refuse chutes.