How Can Cockroach Poop Make You Sick?

There are more than 3000 cockroach species found all over the world. Insects like cockroach eat varieties of food. Therefore, it is believed that their poop is the major source for several diseases including gastroenteritis and streptococcus.

5 years ago
How Can Cockroach Poop Make You Sick?

Are you scared of bugs? No matter, how small or large the insect is, its presence in the house irritates you for the whole day or maybe for a month.

If you have some of the disgusting insects like cockroaches in your house, don’t wait until they grow large in number and become a huge problem. They not only look horrible but they also leave black specks on your wall. The waste of these flying or crawling cockroaches can cause allergies to you.

If you find your home surrounded by a cockroach infestation, cleaning is not the only solution. There are the chances you have to deal with cockroach poop too. Bugs like termites or rodents cause many diseases. Their poops can be the major cause of diarrhea, salmonella, gastro and other conditions.

When cockroaches become a danger, eliminating them becomes a priority. Find out what do cockroaches eat, how you can identify roach poop, and how to get rid of these disgusting creatures forever.

What Do Cockroaches Eat?

Source = Rentokil

Have you ever wondered what do cockroaches eat? It is noticed that cockroaches like eating starchy items like cereals. They are omnivorous and consume any source available to them.

Outdoor cockroaches may consume dead wood and plants. Indoor cockroaches prefer sweets and starches. Besides this, they can also feed on decaying matter and books.

Cockroaches Distribution and Habitat

Source = Servicemaster

Cockroaches live in different environments. They can withstand cold temperatures. Some are even capable of surviving at −122 °C. Cockroaches live in different habitats: most cockroaches live in the forest, in leaf litter burrows and brush.

Some are aquatic and live near the water bodies. Some live in the forest canopy and hide during the day among dead leaves. (1.1)

Signs of Cockroaches in Your Home

Below are the signs that will help you in locating the cockroaches in your home.

  • Odor

Cockroaches poop where they live and sleep. They release an awful smell that attracts other cockroaches to accumulate there. The unpleasant smell becomes more intense as they grow.

  • Marks

If water is abundant, cockroaches will leave irregularly shaped marks as they crawl. Do not forget to check for cockroach marks on the surfaces, on the walls and at the places where they live in the house.

  • Odd Signs

Look for unusual signs of damage on food packaging and other organic goods like paper, books, and leather.

Life Cycle of Cockroach

Source = Shieldtechpest

All cockroaches get mature after completing a life cycle of three stages: Egg production, Nymph to Adult and After Molting stage.

1. Production of Eggs

The lifecycle of a cockroach starts with the laying of eggs. An adult female cockroach produces 10-35 eggs at a time and keeps the egg at a safe place nearby food source.

2. Nymph to Adult Stage

The hatched cockroaches then emerge from eggs as nymphs. During this stage, the newborn cockroaches shed their skin multiple times till the time they reach adulthood.

The hatched young ones may look like an adult but, they are without wings.

3. After Molting Stage

After they reach adulthood, the cockroaches become soft-bodied before getting darker in color and larger in size. The maturity of this insect depends on the environment.

Sometimes the nymphs reach adulthood in 5-6 days. Female adult cockroaches have a lifespan of nearly 180 days, while male cockroaches can live up to 150 days.

How Can You Identify Cockroach Poop?

Source = Cornell

Cockroach loves food, but what goes inside comes out in a much nastier way. Cockroach poop is not easy to notice, especially when there are only two or three cockroaches in a home. Their specks look similar to coffee ground or rice. Some say roach poop appears like a brown cylindrical pellet. However, the size of the poop may vary from small specks to large pellet size droppings.

One or two cockroach droppings often go unnoticed, but a group of droppings indicates that you should eliminate them soon. Small cockroaches leave behind black specks which may range from a coffee grain to ground black pepper. Sometimes, they may appear as dark pink stains.

Source = Imgur

Big cockroaches leave behind the specks that have the cylinder-like shape. The droppings from big cockroaches have ridges from tip to tip. These poops help in finding the difference between mouse droppings (which usually do not have ridges) and roach droppings.

Large cockroaches include smoky brown roaches and Oriental cockroaches, while smaller cockroaches include Brown-banded cockroaches and German cockroaches.

How Important Is It to Get Rid of Cockroaches Poop?

The main reason to get rid of cockroach droppings is your health. There are health issues associated with roach poop, many of which affect various healthier adults and children.

People who are allergic get affected by cockroach poop very easily. Asthma is one of the most severe diseases anyone could have due to these poops. These allergic poops are long-lasting. They often leave a trail of poops (which might contain chemicals) that pass messages to other nearby cockroaches. (1.2)

Where to Look for Cockroaches Poop?

Source = Kagiso

You don't need to look for a particular area for cockroaches poop. Its poop can be noticed anywhere, though there are certain places where defecation is more likely to happen.

Cockroaches mainly poop near food sources and congregation areas. If you have noticed a cockroach under the bed, it is possible that you may find the droppings there as well.

Common places where you can find cockroach droppings are:

  • Inside the drawers, cabinets, on the top of shelves and other food storage areas.
  • Behind refrigerator, dryers, washers and kitchen sinks.
  • Cockroaches poop is usually noticed in the areas with organic storage materials like papers or paper boxes.
  • Near cracks on the walls or wooden structures.
  • On the top of shelves and other objects providing passage.

Pest control professionals place bait in these areas so that more cockroaches can be found easily.

How to Clean and Remove Cockroach Droppings?

It is recommended not to touch cockroaches poop directly. Clean the poop or sweep the droppings with a dustpan if found on the floor. Use a vacuum cleaner and dispose of the poop quickly.

Sanitize the affected areas and try to remove as many stains as possible. Sanitizing the affected areas removes any droppings left and also eliminates the smell that may attract cockroaches.

Like us, cockroaches like to spend time with their loved ones. Bacteria along with the poop emits odors that other nearby roaches find attractive and join them. According to the studies, it is proved that insects like cockroaches communicate through smell which is called pheromones that attracts both male and female.

Not to mention, cockroaches can also defecate inside the walls. So, whenever you notice cockroaches poop in your house clean your walls too. Sometimes, cockroaches live inside the walls, as it is safe for them to reproduce. Even, if you don’t smell their presence, you can get allergies from their poop and become sick.

How to Remove Cockroaches and Their Poop Using Pesticides and Insecticides?

Source = Getauravieskincare

Before you use pesticides, remove moisture from dark areas, seal the cracks in the wall, and seal the gap around windows. Remove piles of wood from outside the house.

  • Liquid and Baits

Solid blocks, liquid or gels already contain chemicals in the solution. It is recommended to buy different bait products that contain active ingredients. If you notice that one of the products is not working, switch to another one with an active ingredient.

  • Sprays

Sprays and aerosols don’t provide long-term control to cockroaches, but they are considered the best solution to knockdown cockroaches at a faster rate. Use cockroach sprays in the kitchen sink, cabinets, drawers and other places where cockroaches reside in the house.

  • Boric Acid Powder

Boric Acid is another crystalline compound that everyone uses to eliminate cockroaches. The tiny particles of the powder stick to the body of the cockroaches and acts as a poison. The powder is absorbed by the insect, and within a week, cockroaches die. Use boric powder alone or mix it with liquid or baits for better results.

Now Let’s Explore Some Lesser Known Facts About Cockroaches

Source = Allencountyhealth

Cockroaches are amazing creatures. They can make your hair stand on edge. Roaches are like giant bacteria and can cause different diseases. Dysentery, typhoid fever, and cholera are the common diseases spread by cockroaches. Do you know that cockroaches can live without a head? Know some more amazing cockroach facts below.

  • They are Cannibals

Yes, cockroaches can eat anything. They are not choosy when it comes to food. This giant insect can consume feces, fruit, cereals or anything you can name it. In the case when cockroach infestation grows in size and the food is scarce, they often turn cannibal and eat other cockroaches to reduce the population.

  • They Can Survive for a Week Without Head

Yes, you read it right. The cockroaches have an open circulatory system, so they breathe through little holes present on their body. They are not dependent on mouth and head for the breathing process. The only reason cockroach dies without a mouth is that it can’t drink water.

  • They Don’t Fly

While you might have seen cockroaches flying in your home, the fact is cockroaches can’t fly. Even though they have wings, they can’t fly. They fall in style, and the wings help them in gliding for short distances.

  • They Can Hold Their Breath for More Than 30 Minutes

This cockroach fact might attract you for some reason. Cockroaches can hold their breath for more than 40 minutes. They can even live underwater for 35 minutes. Unlike us, they don’t use their mouths to respire but use small tubes called spiracles for breathing.

  • They Are Super Fast

Cockroaches are the prey of many large insects and running away is the only defense mechanism. These insects can run up to 1.5meters per second. You won’t believe but, a one-day-old cockroach can also run almost as fast as other adult cockroaches. They can even detect a threat by noticing slight changes in the air current.

  • Size Doesn’t Matter

You are probably wrong if you think that the size of the cockroach makes a difference. Even the smallest cockroach can spread disease as serious as the large one. If you are scared of these 1-2 inch cockroaches, then better don’t see other cockroach species because they can be as big as 3-4 inches.

  • Cockroaches are Addicted to Beer

It is a myth that cockroaches drink beer. They like beer but not because they like to party instead, they drink beer because of the sugar present in the alcohol.

  • Cockroaches Sound

Some cockroaches make a hissing noise, while some make a chirping noise. Hissing noise may include sounds produced by larger nymphs and copulatory sound by adult males. They have been noticed producing hisses from air forced through the spiracles.


These cockroach facts prove that they are the most adaptable creatures ever existed on the earth. This makes eliminating and controlling them even more difficult. Even though you have removed cockroaches poop, make sure that you check the home for cockroach droppings after an interval (maybe after a week or month) because ignoring it can attract more cockroaches.


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