The roach on your left is the Turkestan cockroach and the one on the right is the Oriental Roach. Both of these roaches are outdoor roaches that something makes their way in homes and office building.
The Turkestan cockroach has become an important invasive species throughout Orange County and much of the Southwest. It is rapidly replacing the oriental cockroach in the county as the most dominate outside type roach. It is now widely distributed throughout California urban centers. The reason they have spread so quickly in California is that it’s widely available for purchase on the Internet by animal breeders needing live insects. They are especially popular among reptile breeders because they are easily maintained in the lab, unable to climb smooth surfaces, breed in large numbers, and easy to handle.
However, even though Turkestan cockroaches are now widespread and readily available on the Internet, there is little information on their biology. Two elements we know about that contribute to the success of Turkestan cockroaches compared with oriental cockroaches are that they develop much quicker. The period of the nymphs( that’s their period just after hatching) of Turkestan cockroaches are shorter, and adult female Turkestan cockroaches produce considerably more eggs than do oriental cockroaches.
They also have a more rapid life cycle than the oriental cockroach, allowing them to become adults after five molts, whereas oriental cockroaches require between 7 and 10 molts.
It will be interesting to follow the spread of the Turkestan cockroach in Orange County. This may be the first time that an invasive urban pest species is widely distributed via the Internet and through the sale of live insects.
If you’re having a cockroach problem give Wheeler’s Pest Control a call, we’d be glade to help you get rid of your roaches.