american cockroach up close

What are American cockroaches?

Despite their misleading name, American cockroaches are not native to the United States. These large cockroaches were first introduced to America from Africa in the 1600s! Today, American cockroaches live in high populations throughout the United States, only second to the most common species of roach, the German cockroach.

As the largest species of cockroach living in the United States, the American cockroach is easy to spot with adults growing to between 1 ½ and 2 inches in length. Their long, oval-shaped body is reddish-brown with faded yellow edges on the thorax, and they have fully developed wings. However, like most cockroaches, American cockroaches prefer using their six legs to move from place to place instead of their wings.

cockroach on wood


Why do I have a problem with American cockroaches?

American cockroaches have a varied diet and will eat many of the same things people do. In addition to being attracted to our property because it offers a suitable place for them to live, they are drawn to properties by things like food, trash, and compost.

Once living comfortably outside in gardens, trees, or shrubs close to our homes, it is only a matter of time before the seek refuge inside during periods of rainy or hot, dry weather. Due to their high moisture needs, American cockroaches are often found in and around homes with drainage issues, leaky pipes, or other underlying moisture problems.

Where do American cockroaches nest?

Preferring to avoid light, American cockroaches live in damp, dark locations both outside and inside of homes and businesses. They prefer to live outside, but do move inside (sometimes in mass numbers) trying to escape extreme weather or while in the search of food or water.

Outside, they inhabit shady areas that hold moisture like tree hollows, the soil under shrubs, mulch, woodpiles, and garbage piles. American cockroaches generally move inside of homes and other buildings through openings in exterior walls, the roof, or through pipes and drains. Once inside, they move to dark areas found in the kitchen, basement, or bathroom. They like to live near water pipes, sinks, bathtubs, toilets, sump pump openings, and other sources of moisture.

Are American cockroaches dangerous?

Like all roach species, American cockroaches are dirty and dangerous. The American cockroach and any other species of cockroach should never live within the walls of your home. Before living in your home, they were outside feeding and traveling through decaying plant and animal matter.

American cockroaches carry a variety of dangerous bacteria, human pathogens, and parasites on their bodies and legs that will make people ill. Cockroaches will contaminate food, utensils, dishes, surfaces, and personal belongings stored in our homes. They also produce foul-smelling secretions that affect the flavor of food.

The shed skins and excrement that an American cockroach infestation produces contains a wide variety of allergens. Allergy symptoms like itchy eyes, congestion, runny noses, and skin rashes are common symptoms of a cockroach infestation. Young children are more susceptible to asthma attacks caused by the presence of cockroaches.

How do I get rid of American cockroaches?

Cockroaches are annoying, frustrating, and difficult to control pests. If you’ve found American cockroaches crawling around in your home or business, contact Prosite Pest Control right away.

The best way to get rid of these pests and to keep them from returning is to partner with an experienced professional. Our team will conduct an inspection to accurately identify the species and to develop a treatment plan to get rid of these pests.

If you’re interested in learning more about our American cockroach control services, please reach out to Prosite today!

How do I prevent problems with American cockroaches?

At Prosite, we recommend implementing the following American cockroach prevention tips:

One of the best ways to avoid problems with American cockroaches is excellent sanitation. Remove trash from your home, wash dirty dishes, vacuum, and wipe down counters daily.

  • Keep trash bags in cans with locking lids until it is trash pick-up day.

  • Store your family’s fruit and vegetables in the refrigerator.

  • Keep pantry items and baked goods in plastic or glass containers with lids.

  • Cockroaches love to feed on leftover pet food. Before going to bed at night, pick-up any uneaten pet food.

  • Repair leaky pipes, clogged gutters, or drippy air-conditioners.

  • Use dehumidifiers to lower humidity levels in your home.

  • Keep shrubbery, grass, and weeds cut back away from your home’s foundation.

  • Carefully check your home’s foundation, and seal any opening discovered; also make sure window and door screens are intact to keep American cockroaches from moving inside.

Helpful Articles

The Key To Effective German Cockroach Control In Yakima County

Early Warning Signs Of Roaches In Your Yakima County Home


Get Your Consultation Now!

Schedule Today! Please enter your contact information below and a pest control representative will contact you soon.

or call (509) 955-2456

Affiliations & Accreditations

quality pro schools iconbetter business bureau iconquality pro green logonational pest management logoquality pro logo

Prosite Pest Control Blog

View All Blog Articles

Because of the egg cases that are often found around cockroaches, cleaning up after them can be an endless task. Learn about cockroach prevention here!

Read More

Because of their tenacity, cockroaches can live through nearly anything, making them one pest that you do not want to have in your home or business. Did you know that cockroaches can survive for up to…

Read More

Whether it's a home or a place of business, you can count on German cockroaches making themselves at home if you leave yourself open to an infestation. This not only creates frustration, but also…

Read More