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Ihaggerty1313

How many species of roach exist?

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Unfortunately I don't know how many total species there are. You could google Dictyoptera and see if that helps (subtract mantid species from the number). There are 5 major pests:

American (Periplaneta americana)

Smokybrown (Periplaneta sp. I forget!)

German (Blatella germanica)

Oriental (Blatta orientalis)

Brownbanded (Supella longipalpa)

And also the:

Australian (Periplaneta australisae)

Surinam (Parthenogenic) (Pycnosceles surinamensis)

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I would say that there are roughly 4500 known species, another 5-700 unidentified but known of species, and perhaps more unknown species than known species.

The number of "pest species" is VERY few. Perhaps less than a dozen. I can only think of 6 off the top of my head.

Roaches generally are scavengers that do not care for the same housing situation as humans do for the most part.

Can someone settle this for me.

How many species of roach are known?

AND

How many species are considered pests to humans?

Thanks,

-Ian

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I would say that there are roughly 4500 known species, another 5-700 unidentified but known of species, and perhaps more unknown species than known species.

The number of "pest species" is VERY few. Perhaps less than a dozen. I can only think of 6 off the top of my head.

Roaches generally are scavengers that do not care for the same housing situation as humans do for the most part.

There are approximately 4,500 described species and probably as many undescribed. As pests, there are currently about 40 species recognised as 'pest' species.

cheers

Darren

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*Thanks for posting in, Darren!

I had no idea there would be 40 pest species. I can only know of:

Periplaneta australasia

Periplaneta fuliginosa

Periplaneta americana

Blatella germanica

Blatta orientalis

Pycnoscelus surinamensis

-possibly other Pycnoscelus sp.

... there are others that might be considered pest species in my area, but they are hard to find or rarely found but nowhere near human habitation.

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Interesting... I originally thought that there were something within the 4,000 range but a few people told me under 1000! I absolutely did not believe this and wanted to get to the bottom of it. As for being pests 12-50 has been the answer from most people. The top 6 are exactly as you guys specified but as Darren said there are a few more that haven't really come into contact w/ humans but exhibit the traits of being able to adapt.

Here's a cool fact that you may or may not know and I don't think any living creature other than humans adheres to this more than cockroaches. It's Darwins Theory. Everyone has heard of "The Survival of the Fittest" right? Well what is never printed and more important than that quote is what he wrote after this statement. It states. "It's not about the healthiest, or most intelligent species. It's about the species that can adapt to its surroundings." I found that VERY insightful and I really can't think of too many creatures on this earth other than the Cockroach that personifies this. An unbelievable creature that is STILL to this day very misunderstood. More so than that. These little guys are ESSENTIAL to some of the Earths most delicate eco-systems and for that I give them 2 thumbs up!

-Ian

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Well, sounds like you are in good company. I just wanted to point out that "survival of the fittest" has nothing to do with physical fitness...it's ment to be used in talking about reproductive fitness. Now I think there is some coorelations there in many species for many individuals but that's often misinterpreted. As far as the way Darwin put it (herbert Spencer started it all)...as far as natural selection goes, roaches got it pretty good too.

Interesting... I originally thought that there were something within the 4,000 range but a few people told me under 1000! I absolutely did not believe this and wanted to get to the bottom of it. As for being pests 12-50 has been the answer from most people. The top 6 are exactly as you guys specified but as Darren said there are a few more that haven't really come into contact w/ humans but exhibit the traits of being able to adapt.

Here's a cool fact that you may or may not know and I don't think any living creature other than humans adheres to this more than cockroaches. It's Darwins Theory. Everyone has heard of "The Survival of the Fittest" right? Well what is never printed and more important than that quote is what he wrote after this statement. It states. "It's not about the healthiest, or most intelligent species. It's about the species that can adapt to its surroundings." I found that VERY insightful and I really can't think of too many creatures on this earth other than the Cockroach that personifies this. An unbelievable creature that is STILL to this day very misunderstood. More so than that. These little guys are ESSENTIAL to some of the Earths most delicate eco-systems and for that I give them 2 thumbs up!

-Ian

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So, besides being food for other creatures... what role DO cockroaches play in the world? I know it is broad considering all of the different ones, but it is just one of those puzzling newbie questions. :mellow:

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So, besides being food for other creatures... what role DO cockroaches play in the world? I know it is broad considering all of the different ones, but it is just one of those puzzling newbie questions. :mellow:

They are basically the earths recyclers. All that vegetation that falls in the Rain Forest... Taken care of by roaches. And then an animal comes along and eats the roach and so on and so forth. W/O roaches many tropical rain forests would be in more trouble than they already are. So cheers to the six legged ones!

-Ian

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Some are even pollinators filling in the position of bats, bees, and lbutterflies in some systems.

So, besides being food for other creatures... what role DO cockroaches play in the world? I know it is broad considering all of the different ones, but it is just one of those puzzling newbie questions. :mellow:

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Hi,

several years ago I compiled an annotated list and bibliography of 'pest' cockroaches, its somewhat out-of-date, but have posted the short version (species list) below. Some of these species are pests within a restricted area e.g. single area within a country, while others are widespread circumtropical pests. If we included the peridomestic species in this list it would be far greater, I have listed those which at some point have been published as a pest within buildings (human dwellings plus commercial premises).

As to 'what do roaches do for us' question, they are indeed an important part of the leaf-litter decomposition guild, though this may only be true for the Tropics. Some species may act as pollinators for plants. They form a large portion of the biomass of insects in leaf litter and provide food for many larger animals.

cheers

Darren

BLATTIDAE

Blatta orientalis Linnaeus

Blatta lateralis Walker

Drymaplaneta semivitta (Walker)

Eurycotis biolleyi Rehn

Eurycotis floridana (Walker)

Herbardina concinna (DeHaan)

Neostylopyga rhombifolia (Stoll)

Pelmatosilpha larifuga Gurney

Periplaneta americana (Linnaeus)

Periplaneta australasiae (Fabricius)

Periplaneta brunnea Burmeister

Periplaneta fuliginosa (Serville)

Periplaneta japonica Karny

Periplaneta floweri Hanitsch

POLYPHAGIDAE

Polphaga aegyptiaca (Linnaeus)

Polyphaga saussurei (Dohrn)

BLATTELLIDAE

Balta notulata (Stal)

Balta vilis (Brunner)

Blattella asahinai Mizukubo

Blattella germanica (Linnaeus)

Blattella lituricollis (Walker)

Blattella nipponica Asahina

Blattella vaga Hebard

Cariblatta lutea (Saussure & Zehtner)

Eudromiella n.sp Fisk & Gurney

Ischnoptera bergrothi (Griffini)

Iscnoptera vulpina Hebard

Lobopterella dimitiatipes (Bolivar)

Neoblattella panamae (Hebard)

Onchostylus pallidiolus (Shiraki)

Parcoblatta spp

Parcoblatta fulvescens (Saussure & Zehtner)

Parcoblatta kyotensis Asahina

Parcoblatta pennysylvanica (DeGeer)

Pseudomops septrionalis (Hebard)

Paratemnopteryx couloniana (Saussure)

Shelfordina orchidae Asahina

Symploce pallens (Stephens)

Supella longipalpa (Fabricius)

BLABERIDAE

Archimandritta tessellata Rehn

Calolampra irrorata (Fabricius)

Nauphoeta cinerea (Olivier)

Opisthoplatia orientalis Burmeister

Pycnoscelus surinamensis (Linnaeus)

Leucophaea maderae (Fab.)

Blaberus spp

Ectobius spp

Panchlora spp

Panchlora nivea (Linnaeus)

Phoetalia pallida (Brunner)

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Darren, is there an 'official' list of pests? In this thread alone pest species have gone from 5 or 6, through a dozen to your much larger list, and I have gone from being confused to having ' no idea at all!' :lol:

Does one definitive authority decide what is or isn't a pest, or if that's not the case, how is it done?

Cheers!

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I have listed those which at some point have been published as a pest within buildings (human dwellings plus commercial premises)....

Many of the species and genera on your list can't live in human dwellings unless you're including possible presence in open-air, mud huts in the forest in which case every single invertebrate and vertebrate on the planet would qualify as pest.

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I'm sure Orin caught this, but I think it's important to point out that Darren also said commercial buildings were included in the list. I wouldn't be surprised if some of these species that are certainly able to reproduce in homes did once upon a time establish themselves in numbers within buildings that temporarily store foodstuffs (like fruit), for example. Imagine a farm that picks fruit and stores it in a building on the property. A portion of it that is picked is already overripe or spoiled. That means feeding time for all sorts of bugs!

I saw hundreds of what were apparently Blatta lateralis at all the rest stops in Southern Arizona this time. They weren't there 7 years ago.

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Another question regarding numbers.

In the United States, roughly how many species are kept?

And what other creature can you get such variety so easily? I mean, you could have fifty different breeds of dogs in your home, but that would be too much work. And you'd likely be seen on an episode of Animal Cops and labeled a hoarder.

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synantropic cockroaches are species that are well established in human modified environments like crops, urban gardens, human dwelings, etc., not necesarily pests, only those that are well established in human dwelings, or crop damage, so there are few.

i want add some few synantropic species, that are no pests, to Darren's list :

BLATTELLIDAE or PSEUDOMOPINAE

Anaplecta fallax

Anaplecta decipiens

Anisopygia latisecta

Ischnoptera occidentalis

Pseudomops interceptus

POLYPHAGIDAE or CORIDIIDAE

Homoeogamia mexicana

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Another question regarding numbers.

In the United States, roughly how many species are kept?

And what other creature can you get such variety so easily? I mean, you could have fifty different breeds of dogs in your home, but that would be too much work. And you'd likely be seen on an episode of Animal Cops and labeled a hoarder.

Tarantulas, darkling beetles, mantids, and scorpions are about the only other ones. It's mostly do to regulations, as there are many more insects that can be kept in Europe, let's say.

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