Cockroaches and Their Eggs!

Cockroaches, also known as roaches, are common household pests closely related to termites. While cockroaches have been indicators of uncleanliness throughout human history, most cockroach species are not “dirty pests” but live in various habitats. Only 30 cockroach species out of the 4,600 known species roam near human habitats. Cockroaches can tolerate various climatic conditions, ranging from the Arctic cold to the tropical heat. Tropical cockroach species are larger than species in other regions.


The basic body structure of the species remains constant, consisting of a head, a thorax, and an abdomen. The external surface of the cockroach consists of a substance known as calcium carbonate. The head is small and flat, having large compound eyes, two ocelli (also called simple eyes), and long, flexible antennae. Additionally, mouthparts consisting of mandibles or jaws for chewing, salivary glands, and touch and taste receptors are present. The thorax is divided into three segments, and the abdomen is divided into ten segments. Two pairs of wings, attached to the second and third segments of the thorax, allow the cockroach to fly. Three pairs of legs are attached to the thorax. Spiracles, present on the abdomen, are used for respiration. The final segment of the abdomen has the organs for reproduction (different in male and female cockroaches) and an anus.


Female cockroaches lay egg cases, known as oothecae, through the organs of reproduction. These egg cases hatch, giving rise to new individuals, which go through the life cycle: egg, nymph, and adult stages. Watch this video of how cockroach eggs hatch, giving rise to many new cockroach individuals! 

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