german cockroach vs american cockroach

German Cockroach vs American Cockroach: What’s the Difference?

Get ready for facts to make your skin crawl–there are more than 4,000 different kinds of cockroaches.

Although most species of cockroaches live in the wild, two common types that you may find in your home are the German cockroach and the American cockroach.

Knowing the difference between the two can help you when it comes to pest control and prevention. Here’s how to tell the difference between the German cockroach vs American cockroach.

German Cockroaches: How to Spot Them

German cockroaches are the most common of the two types of cockroaches. They are smaller and are about 1/2 an inch to 5/8 an inch long. They are light brown and have six legs.

One distinguishing characteristic of German cockroaches is two dark stripes that run down the plate behind their head.

Where You Will Find Them

You’ll find German cockroaches near sources of water and food–most likely in the kitchen or the bathroom. They enjoy nesting in moist, warm areas. They might hide in crevices around the kitchen.

German cockroaches can travel and enter your home in different ways. They may come from cardboard boxes or secondhand furniture.

These types of roaches also reproduce quickly. A female German cockroach can carry 40 eggs.

American Cockroaches: How to Spot Them

On the other hand, American cockroaches are larger–they are the biggest sized cockroaches in North America. They are probably closer to what you imagine when you think about cockroaches.

American cockroaches are nearly two inches long. They are a reddish-brown color with yellow on their thorax. Also, they can fly.

Where You Will Find Them

American cockroaches are less of a nuisance because they prefer not to be in your homes. They are usually found in dark, moist environments like sewers in big cities.

However, when there is a major change in climate or their food supply, they may enter your home looking for food or reprieve from extreme climate.

In your home, you may find them in dark or moist environments like your attic or basement.

Health Concerns From Cockroaches

If you have cockroaches in your home, you’re going to want to get rid of them fast.

Cockroaches are a common indoor allergen source. Kids are more likely to have cockroach allergies than compared to adults.

The enzymes that come from the cockroach’s saliva, droppings, eggs, and other parts may trigger allergic reactions.

What’s more, cockroaches can carry bacteria. If the bacteria they carry is spread on food, this can cause diseases such as streptococcus, salmonella, or staphylococcus.

Although it’s an unsettling feeling to have a cockroach infestation in your home, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have an unclean home.

Even in clean homes, cockroaches can make their way in if they find a food source.

How to Get Rid of a German Cockroach vs American Cockroach

If you suspect you have a cockroach infestation of any kind in your home, the best option is to call pest control services.

A professional pest control company will have the appropriate experience, materials, and knowledge to deal with a cockroach infestation. Instead of stressing out at the idea of getting rid of the cockroaches yourself, you can let the professionals take care of it.

However, what you can do is prevent a future cockroach infestation. In addition to pest control services, here are some things you can do.

Remove the Food Source

One key tip for prevention is removing all sources of food for the cockroaches. This includes changing the trash every night. You should also keep the trash covered with a lid that fits tightly.

Don’t leave out any food on countertops. You should also keep food stored in sealed containers. Don’t leave any containers or bags opened in your pantry.

Keep the Kitchen Tidy

Another way to prevent cockroach infestation is to keep your kitchen clean. This includes cleaning any leftover crumbs in areas like the sink or countertops.

You should also sweep the kitchen floor or vacuum for any leftover food particles every night. Wipe down any spills or grease right away.

You also shouldn’t leave any dirty dishes in the sink overnight. The leftover food particles can attract roaches.


Do you find yourself having to move items on your kitchen countertops when you wipe down the kitchen? It might be time to declutter your kitchen.

Less clutter makes it easier to clean. It also decreases the chance that you miss any crumbs or food particles.

If you have extra appliances or items sitting on your kitchen countertops, and you don’t use them, you can donate them or put them away.

You can also declutter other parts of your home to prevent roaches like your attic, basement, or garage. If you have all your items in cardboard boxes, you can move them to plastic containers that have a lid.

Fix the Leaky Pipes

Since cockroaches like to live in damp environments, you should fix any leaky pipes or faucets. You can also check the basement and other areas of your home for any leaks.

Seal All Small Cracks or Openings

Do an inspection around your home for any small openings that cockroaches can enter. This includes checking your windows for any openings or tears in your screens.

You can seal any openings on your windows or doors with weatherstripping.

Cockroach Infestation? Contact Pest Control Today

Have you been battling a cockroach infestation for far too long? Maye you’ve tried to get rid of the roaches yourself, but you still see them coming back.

It doesn’t matter if you have a German cockroach vs American cockroach problem. Either way, you want them out of your home.

Pointe Pest Control can help with your pest control situation. Contact us today to make a service appointment.

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