Identify Your Pest

American Cockroach Size - Termite Inspection Des Moines

American Cockroach

Quick Facts


Bodies can range up to 1.6 in (41 mm) long.

Preferred Habitat

Any place that is warm and offers decaying food.

Known Health Issues

They can carry disease-causing bacteria and transfer them to human food sources. They can also cause allergic reactions.
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Sometimes called the waterbug, this is the largest species of common cockroaches. This species is more common in tropical climates, but can also be found in the Midwest during the summer months. Their average body size can range up to 1.6 inches (41 mm) long and they frequent habitats where it is warm and offers decaying food. American cockroaches can move quickly, darting in and out of sight when humans are present and can squeeze through tight spaces and cracks in your home despite their large body size. These pests are very active at night and are particularly interested in foods that are decaying or fermenting.

Since American cockroaches are large and develop quite slowly, you won’t find large cockroach infestations in homes, but they carry disease-causing bacteria like Salmonella and transfer them to human food. Cockroaches have also been known to cause allergic reactions with their odorous secretion.