Skip to content

What Do Cockroach Eggs Look Like

Whendealing with roaches, it is important to get an early jump on the problem before it becomes a full-blown infestation. Being able to identify the signs left by cockroaches can be helpful in this endeavor. This includes knowing what roach eggs look like and how to get rid of them.

What do roach eggs look like?

Cockroaches lay many eggs at one time. These eggs are held in a single case called an ootheca. The ootheca is made from a protein substance that will harden and protect the eggs from predators and other environmental elements. Most ootheca are brown or reddish brown in color and some may have small ridges along the sides.

A cockroach ootheca, or egg
Cockroach ootheca by Happy1892 , from Wikimedia Commons

How big are cockroach eggs?

The size of the ootheca varies by species. Smaller cockroach species generally produce smaller oothecae. The small brown-banded cockroach produces an ootheca approximately 5 mm long, while the ootheca of the much larger Oriental cockroach can reach 8-10 mm.

Two cockroach eggs next to a ruler
American cockroach oothecae by Fonkê Leif Selber und Carsten Selber , from Wikimedia Commons

How many eggs does a cockroach lay?

The number of eggs in an ootheca varies by species also. German roaches are known to reproduce rapidly. There can be 20-40 eggs in each ootheca. American cockroaches reproduce at a slower pace, and it is typical to find only 15 or 16 eggs inside one of their cases.

How long do roach eggs take to hatch?

Cockroach eggs incubate for different amounts of time. German roaches may hatch in as little as 28 days, while Oriental roaches can take up to 60 days. That means that even if you have gotten rid of the adult cockroaches in your home, more eggs may hatch up to 2 months later. This is why a well-rounded treatment plan that kills adults, nymphs, and eggs is needed.

Where do I find cockroach eggs?

When a female roach produces an egg case, she may carry it with her or deposit it somewhere safe. German cockroach females carry their ootheca with them until right before hatching. You may see an ootheca protruding out of its abdomen up to a quarter of an inch. The Oriental cockroach, on the other hand, only carries its egg case for a short time, and then deposits it in a dark, warm, sheltered location near a food source. Some areas to check for roach eggs may include: pantries, closets, cracks and crevices, cabinets, drawers, crawl spaces, and food prep areas. Eggs cases are typically hidden very well and stuck to surfaces.

A cockroach laying eggs
Cockroach with an egg case by Toby Hudson , from Wikimedia Commons

How do I get rid of roach eggs?

Once you find a roach egg case, you should eliminate it as soon as possible. You can do this by squishing it, covering it with boric acid, spraying it with pesticides, or using an insect growth regulator on it. Some methods will kill the eggs, while others will kill the babies once they hatch. If you choose to vacuum the egg case up, immediately remove and dispose of the bag. It is even better if you destroy the egg case even after vacuuming it up. PF Harris has a full line ofcockroach products that can help you eliminate roaches. Trust PF Harris for all of your home pest control needs.