Blattodea

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Green Banana Cockroach (Panchlora nivea)

Also known as the Cuban cockroach, the green banana cockaroach is a colorful species of cockroach native to Cuba, The Caribbean and parts of the southern United States. Green banana cockroaches are usually found outdoors and inhabit shrubbery, trees and other plants. They are strong fliers and are mainly active at night, and are usually attracted to bright lights. Banana cockroaches are often kept as pets due to their unique green color.

Phylogeny

Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Blattodea-Blaberidae-Panchlora-nivea

Image Source(s)

Here’s a group picture from my latest tank cleaning. I counted 20!

Unfortunately, they haven’t given me any new baby roaches for a long time, and I’ve even started finding discarded egg sacs, so I’m trying to figure out what might be wrong. I’ve started changing their diet a little, and introduced some new roaches from a different breeder to broaden their gene pool. Fingers crossed!

“Six-spotted Cockroach” (Eublaberus distanti

Also known as the Four-spotted Cockroach or Trinidad Bat-cave Cockroach, the six-spotted cockroach is a species of Blaberid cockroach that is native to Trinidad and Tobago, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, French Guiana, Suriname, Guyana, Brazil, and Peru. Six-spotted cockroaches typically are observed in relatively dry guano-rich areas in caves (thus the name “bat-cave”) but are also found in rotting logs, decaying litter and epiphytes. Like many other cockroach species, E. distanti is a scavenger feeding on any animal or vegetable matter readily available. 

Classification

Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Blattodea-Blaberidae-Eublaberus-E. distanti

Image: Ltshears

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Australian Cockroach “Sun Tiger” (Polyzosteria sp.) in Girraween National Park, Southern Downs, between Queensland and New South Wales, Australia

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Order Blattodea- Cockroaches

Cockroaches are possibly the most despised of all insects. Just hearing the word disgusts most people, but the truth is out of the thousands of known species only four are common pests. These are the American, German, Oriental, and Asian Cockroaches. 

Despite what most people think I find cockroaches to be fascinating and intriguing insects. They have adapted to almost every habitat on Earth. While most people are only familiar with the fairly unassuming brown pest species there are many bright, colorful, and beautifully patterned species. Many people even keep cockroaches as pets, Madagascar Hissing Roaches being the most common.

Cockroaches are part of the superorder Dictyoptera with their close relatives the mantids and termites. The similarities between roaches and mantids can be seen in the triangular heads and laying of oothecas. Recent DNA testing has led some people to consider termites to be part of the order Blattodea with the cockroaches because of the very close similarities with wood-eating roaches in the Cryptocercus genus.

Speckled Cockroach (Nauphoeta cinerea)

Also known as the Lobster Cockroach, the speckled cockroach is a species of Blaberid cockroach that originally was native to North-Eastern Africa but has been accidentally introduced to other places around the world. Like many insects female speckled cockroaches are capable of reproducing via parthenogenesis.

Classification

Animalia-Arthropoda-Blattodea-Blaberidae-Nauphoeta-N. cinerea

Image: Ed Baker

Bug of the Day

Ok, here you go, the THREE PEOPLE who think roaches are cool ;-).

This is a Dusky Cockroach, Ectobius lapponicus, that I found on the side of my house earlier this summer. Looked a bit too much like a house-infesting German cockroach for my liking - feh - but it turned out to be a European introduction we see now in the northeastern US and Canada.