Do you know your German cockroaches from your American ones?

Everyone knows cockroaches are a real pest, but what you might not know is there is more than one type. Unless you know what you are dealing with, you won’t know how to remove them.

Read on for the difference between German cockroaches vs American cockroaches. And how to deal with them for good.


German cockroaches are between half an inch to five-eights of an inch in size. They’re brown with two stripes. You can see the stripes running behind the head, down the thorax. While they have wings, they do not fly.

American cockroaches are the biggest in the US. They reach about an inch and a half to two inches in length with a reddish-brown color. At the edge of the thorax, the color turns to more of a faded yellow. Unlike their German counterparts, American cockroaches can fly.


German cockroaches prefer heated, mad-made structures and tuck away out of the open. They will hide in cracks and crevices around the home with a liking for heated areas near appliances.

American cockroaches prefer warm, dark, damp spaces. They can live anywhere from sewers, storm drains, your home, and outdoors. In the home, you’re likely to find them in basements, utility rooms, attics, crawl spaces, and walls.

Controlling American Cockroaches

As they prefer to be outside, American roaches are a more occasional visitor in the home. They may wander through doors or windows by accident.

Quarterly services and condition checks around the home should be enough to keep them at bay. Make sure to check the places in your home where they’re likely to be for any damp or moisture. It could be a sign of serious damage that needs attention right away.

When it doubt, it’s better to call in the professionals like Altus Pests at They can pinpoint the type of cockroach and advise on how to deal with them.

Controlling German Cockroaches

The difference between controlling German vs American cockroaches couldn’t be more different. German roaches are a much larger issue. For the most part, this is because they like being indoors.

You may have brought German roaches into the home in a few ways. It could have been from a cardboard box brought in from storage. Or even food boxes from the grocery store! If your neighbors have an issue with them, it’s also likely they’ll make their way to you.

Another issue with German roaches in their high reproduction rate. A female will only need to mate once producing 4-6 eggs. Inside the eggs can be an average of 40-50 young. You only need a few females to see the population explode.

If you want to remove German roaches, you’ll need monthly treatments from a professional. This breaks the lifecycle and will, over time, get them out of your home.

German Cockroaches vs American Cockroaches — Know the Difference

Pest Control

So there you have it! Now you know the difference between German cockroaches vs American. If you ever find yourself with these unwanted visitors, you’ll know what to do.

While American roaches aren’t as much of an issue as their German relatives. But it both cases it’s always best to call out the professionals to help rid your home of these pests.

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