Among the largest in the United States, this cockroach may measure greater than 2 inches in length.
Very dark brown or black.
Florida woods cockroaches are found in central to northern Florida and are common around homes with wooded lots. They typically enter the attics or crawl spaces of homes and, from there, move down into the living spaces. When disturbed, these cockroaches give off a strong, disagreeable odor. While it feeds on a wide variety of foods, the Florida woods cockroach prefers decaying organic debris it finds outdoors.
This species lives outdoors in tree holes, wood piles, leaf litter, and heavy ground-covering vegetation, such as ivy. In homes, it prefers to live in poorly ventilated attics and crawl spaces where the humidity levels remain at a high, yet constant, level.
The best strategies for dealing with the Florida woods cockroach are exclusion and harborage reduction. Tips include:
- Heavy vegetation such as ivy, monkey grass, and other ground covers, should not be used in landscape beds next to the building.
- Firewood should be stored off the ground and as far from the house as possible.
- Piles of lumber, bricks, etc. should be removed from the property.
- Cracks in exterior walls should be sealed.
- Tight-fitting screens should be in place over all attic and foundation vents.