How do cockroaches multiply

Cockroaches eggs - appearance and control

Cockroaches (cockroaches) are one of the most unpopular pests. They are nocturnal, can attack food and transmit diseases.

Cockroaches plant themselves over them Laying eggs away. But what do these eggs actually look like and where can you find them?

Should you include the removal of the egg packets in the control of cockroaches and is it actually true that you must not trample cockroaches, otherwise you will distribute the offspring under your shoe?

Cockroaches - an overview

Cockroaches are actually in this country Scrape called and are at home all over the world. With over 3,600 genera, they are among the most species-rich insects. Most species are not found in our households, but prefer to live outdoors (and especially in primeval and rainforests).

In Germany there are primarily 3 species that can also be found in households:

  • German cockroach
  • American cockroach
  • Oriental cockroach (common cockroach)

Most common household cockroaches in Germany

Their size varies from 1 - 5 cm. This makes the cockroach one of the largest feeding pests in our latitudes.

Cockroaches live on average 4 - 7 months and in individual cases they can live up to 1.5 years. They multiply via that Laying eggsfrom which larvae hatch and develop into adult animals.

What do cockroaches' eggs look like

Cockroaches are survivors and have developed a special form of egg-laying to protect their offspring.

Cockroaches lay their eggs in the form of packets of eggs (ootheca). These pea-sized packets consist of a protective cover containing chitin and are colored light brown to dark brown depending on the type.

The cover protects the offspring from weather-related influences (temperature fluctuations, loss of moisture) and predators.

The size of the egg packets is comparatively constant and varies only slightly between the species.

Often there is a small fold on the long side of an ootheca. At this point the larvae will finally open the chitin shell and hatch after a few days.

After creating such a package, depending on the type, it is carried around on the body of the cockroach for a few days and finally stored in a safe place.

A special feature is the German cockroach, which only puts the ootheca off shortly before hatching and actually wears it on the body the whole time until then.

How many eggs do cockroaches lay?

The relatively small size of the egg packets prevents countless eggs from being laid.

There are just 15-40 eggs in an egg packet.

Cockroaches can lay eggs up to 5 times a year if conditions are favorable. These favorable conditions are very often found in households, as there is a constant climate and the cockroaches are not subject to any seasonality.

Even if the number of eggs laid appears to be relatively low, an infestation should not make you careless. The larvae develop rapidly and so cockroaches are sexually mature after just 28 days and can lay eggs themselves. This makes their numbers grow rapidly over the year!

Where do cockroaches lay their eggs?

After the ootheca is worn, the cockroach looks for a place to put the egg packet.

Cockroaches lay their eggs in sheltered and hidden places such as cracks, small openings, and other inaccessible niches.

There they can develop in peace and are protected from external influences as well as possible until they hatch.

Should I find and remove egg packets?

However, this makes it all the more difficult for active control to search specifically for the egg packets and to remove them.

Mostly you will not see the oothecs. The anyway shy animals hide the offspring so well that you only have a realistic chance with major interventions.

This can only be worthwhile if panels and covers can be removed with little effort. But even then, the egg packet does not necessarily have to be located exactly there. In addition, it is very unlikely that you will discover all of the oothecs.

Of course you can look for the eggs, but this is not effective and there is no relationship between the effort and the benefit. Holistic cockroach control makes more sense!

If you do go looking for it, or if you happen to spot eggs, the best method is to simply dispose of them. No pesticide or magic drug is necessary. You can simply sweep up or vacuum the eggs and then empty the collecting container.

Cockroaches eggs on the shoe - The legend

Another important topic is a myth about the distribution of eggs under shoes.

It is well known that the German cockroach carries the egg package around with it.

Now it could turn out that the (difficult, because very shy) discovery of a cockroach will result in a devastating kick on your part, which will transport the pest into the cockroach heaven.

According to this theory, the eggs survive the kick protected in their chitin shell and are then distributed further over the sole of the shoe.

This is natural total humbug and far from reality.

Cockroaches in themselves are extremely resilient and robust. Protected by their armor, they can withstand extreme forces.

In this short video you first see how nimble they are and then the strong pressure their bodies can withstand:

In relation to this, the egg packet in the chitin shell is a raw egg.

If you kick a cockroach to the afterlife, you did the same with the egg packet!


Other exciting insights into the topic of cockroaches:

Can cockroaches fly?
Can cockroaches swim or dive?


Cover picture: Toby Hudson / CC BY-SA