Australian Cockroach Periplaneta australasiae Fabricius (Insecta: Blattodea: Blattidae)
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Species P. Australasiae
..............................COCKROACHES PICTORIAL KEY TO SOME COMMON SPECIES
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This species resembles the American cockroach but can be distinguished by the presence of light yellow bands on upper margins of the forewings.
Despite its name, the Australian cockroach is a cosmopolitan species, and an introduced species in Australia. P. australasiae probably originated in Africa.
P. australasiae are tropical and sub-tropical species but are also found in ports and shipping areas in temperate climates. Usually found in pet shops, particularlythose with large numbers of heated fish tanks, it requires hot, moist conditions to survive.
It is very common in the southern United States and in tropical climates, and can be found in many locations throughout the world due to its travels by shipping and commerce between locations.
It prefers warmer climates and is not cold-tolerant, but it may be able to survive indoors in colder climates. It does well in moist conditions, but also can tolerate dry conditions as long as water is available. It often lives around the perimeter of buildings. It appears to prefer eating plants more than its relatives do, but can feed on a wide array of organic (including decaying) matter. Like most cockroaches, it is a scavenger.
It may come indoors to look for food and even to live, but in warm weather, it may move outdoors and enter buildings looking for food. This species can be found in nature in tropical parts of Australia; it has also been found along the east coast of Australia, from Cape York to the Victorian border.
Eggs are encased in an egg capsule (Ootheca). Female drops the egg capsule (Ootheca) shortly after it is formed near a food source, in crevices, on walls, or under workable material such as moist wood, so as to camouflage it. Eggs per capsule: 16-24. Incubation period: 30-40 days. Nymphal period: 6-12 months Nymphs normally moult 10-12 times to reach adulthood. Females may produce 12-30 egg capsules in a lifetime. Egg capsules are completed and dropped at about 10 day intervals. Adult lifespan: up to 8 months.