When you spot a large, reddish-brown bug in or around your home, you may wonder if you could have a palmetto bug infestation. Or is it actually a cockroach infestation? Are palmetto bugs and cockroaches the same, or are they two totally different species of insects? And how should you treat palmetto bugs in your home if you encounter them?

Let’s answer some of these questions to provide clarity about the difference between palmetto bugs and cockroaches.

Is the Palmetto Bug a Separate Species from the Cockroach?

With over 4,000 species of cockroaches in existence globally, it can seem as if one called the palmetto bug is different from the other roaches commonly found in the southeast. However, “palmetto bug” is more of a regional or colloquial name that Americans use to describe three types of cockroaches:

  • The American cockroach
  • The Florida woods cockroach
  • The smoky brown cockroach

These cockroaches have earned the alternative name “palmetto bug” because of their similar appearances and their shared behavior of seeking out palmetto trees for shelter.

It’s important to remember that the three species of roach called “palmetto bugs” are different from the small, brown German cockroach.  The presence of palmetto bugs in a home does not always indicate a cleanliness or infestation issue in the home, as these insects commonly enter even clean homes. Unlike the German cockroach, palmetto bugs aren’t commonly known to spread disease. However, having an infestation of palmetto bugs is still something to take care of with an intentional, regular pest control program.

Quick Facts About the American Cockroach

  • It is one of the most common variants of the roach species in Georgia.
  • It is the largest of the roaches in Georgia, growing up to 2 inches in length.
  • It can live up to 2 years.
  • It has wings and can “fly,” but the flight path is more so a gliding movement from one surface to a lower surface.
  • It has a dark-brown appearance with a light-yellow band between the head and thorax.
  • It prefers damp, dark areas outdoors, like trees, leaf piles, mulch, and wood piles.
  • If inside, it will seek out dark, damp locations like basements, bathrooms, attics, and utility rooms.
  • It is more active at night.
  • It responds to pest control solutions.

Quick Facts About the Florida Woods Cockroach

  • While it is common in Georgia, it is more frequently found throughout Florida.
  • It is one of the larger roach species, growing over 1 ½ inches long.
  • It varies in color from reddish-brown to almost black.
  • Adults have underdeveloped wings and cannot fly.
  • Its abdomen is ribbed, creating several horizontal stripes along the surface.
  • It is often confused for the oriental cockroach because of their similar appearances.
  • It can live over a year.
  • It prefers the same locations outside as the American cockroach and can be found in the same locations indoors.
  • It responds to pest control solutions.

Quick Facts About the Smoky Brown Cockroach

  • It is common across the south from Texas to Florida and is found as far north as North Carolina.
  • It can grow up to 1 ¼ inches in length.
  • It can range from dark reddish brown to black in color.
  • It is a flying roach and has stronger wings than many other flying roach species.
  • It prefers the same living indoor and outdoor locations as the American cockroach and Florida woods cockroach.
  • It is often found alongside American cockroaches.
  • It has an average lifespan of 1 year but can live up to 2 years under ideal conditions.
  • It is more active at night.
  • It responds to pest control solutions.

Do you have a palmetto bug or cockroach problem at your home? Call Bizzy Bee Exterminators.

We have the solutions you need to eliminate these pests from your home so that you can live comfortably and roach free day and night! Call us to schedule an extermination appointment: 1-800-273-4958

Call Bizzy Bee Exterminators today for your pest control needs: 1-800-273-4958

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