What do cockroaches eat? This is a question asked by two types of people. The one faces a roach infestation, and the other group breeds feeder roaches like the red runner and discoid roaches for their exotic pets. I will be answering both the queries and solving this problem all at once.
Cockroaches eat everything from plants to filth to animal matter. However, cockroaches love eating starchy food, including bread, sweets, donuts, bakery items. On the other hand, feeder roaches like to eat proteinous food, including egg-white, pulses, and cat food. Also, try to maintain a well-balanced diet with vegetables, including lettuce, potatoes, carrots, fruits, and pulses.
From hotels to apartments, cockroaches are everywhere. They are the sturdiest insects out there, with survival capabilities beyond our imagination. You will be amazed to know that cockroaches are thought to have survived nukes after they appeared out of the rebel of Hiroshima nuclear attack.
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Cockroaches are omnivorous
Cockroaches are omnivorous and therefore can eat and digest anything from plant matter to animals. Nature has designed cockroaches to be natural scavengers, and that’s why they eat everything organic.
However, not all cockroaches are the same. Some prefer to eat more decaying matter like garbage and feces, while others eat plants and fruits.
Here is a list of eatables that cockroaches eat indoors,
Cockroaches are attracted to the smell of garbage and therefore love to eat it. Garbage includes rotting organic matter such as pieces and peels of fruits and vegetables.
Uncovered Garbage bins inside the house are the favorite spot for roaches to mingle around at night. Unfortunately, not only the roaches residing inside your house are attracted to garbage, but your house might get infested from roaches coming from your neighbors.
Therefore, you must cover garbage adequately to avoid infestation.
2. Leftover Food
Cockroaches love to eat the leftover food on the kitchen table or around your house. These leftover foods include bread crumbs, sweets, pieces of fruits and vegetables.
Cockroaches eat leftover food usually at night because they are afraid of humans. Therefore, it is advised to always cover leftover food or keep it safe inside the refrigerator.
3. Bakery Items
Bakery items have a strong pleasant smell that attracts everyone from insects to humans. Cockroaches love to eat bakery items, including donuts, biscuits, bagels, buns, rolls, and cakes.
Any of these bakery items spilled around the house or left unattended attract roaches, and therefore you must keep them covered or keep them inside closed inaccessible cabinets.
4. Fruits and Vegetables
Roaches eat fruits and vegetables, both fresh and rotting. The fruits with a strong aroma attract roaches more than those with a subtle smell. Fruits with a strong aroma are mangos, apples, durian, and rotting fruits.
Interestingly, citrus fruits including lemon, oranges, and mandarin are good at keeping roaches away. Therefore, cut orange and keep it with other fruits to keep roaches away.
Dirth, pieces of hairs, feces, and other filthy items attract roaches into eating them. That is why filthy houses attract roaches more than ones kept clean.
|Cockroach||Habitat||Love eating||Less eating|
|Smokey Brown||Outdoors||Garbage||Animal Matter|
Do Roaches Eat Ants?
You will be amazed to know that cockroaches fear ants roaming around the house. Although cockroaches eat dead ants, they never eat live ants. Instead, ants attack roaches and even kill them by zombifying them.
Oriental cockroach loves eating ants more than any other cockroach.
What do Cockroaches eat in the Outdoors?
Interestingly some of the biggest cockroaches live outdoors and never infest homes. Similarly, almost 30 cockroaches in the US live in the wild and never infest homes.
Cockroaches living in the wild do not have bakery items, garbage, or sweets to feed on. Instead, cockroaches eat plant leaves both fresh and decaying, fruits, tree bark, and flowers outdoors.
It is essential to know that some cockroaches live outdoors but are accidentally brought inside the house and therefore are known to infest homes. For example, the famous Wood Cockroaches are brought along with woodpiles, and when they infest homes made out of timber.
These roaches are accidentally brought outdoors, eating anything present, from plants to starchy food.
|Megaloblatta Longepennis||Wild Grasses||Never||Rotting leaves/Fruits|
|Red Runner||Sandy Dunes||Moderate||Herbs|
|Death’s Head Cockroach||Wildland||Never||Decaying Leaves|
What to feed Feeder Roaches?
Feeder roaches are a unique class of roaches used as food for exotic pets. Exotic pets might be geckos, lizards, bearded dragons, and many more. Feeder roaches are,
It is essential to know that some roaches, such as the Dubia Roach, are illegal in some states, including Florida, California, and Louisiana. The feeder cockroaches are different from other roaches by following features,
- Contain low Chitin (Polymer of aminoacid that is difficult to digest)
- High protein
- High Moisture content
- Rich in calcium and vitamins
- Easy to keep and breed because they cant eascape
Because of these features, feeder roaches have unique food requirements when breeding them. The diet of feeder roach should be rich in proteins and vitamins yet balanced with fresh veggies and fruits.
Feeder cockroaches eat the following things,
- Powdered Pulses
- Fresh vegitables including potatoes, legumes, lettuce and carrots
- Fruits including guava, apple and magoes
- Egg white
- Bread and peanut butter
- Cat food
However, I recommend you to buy prepared food for roaches that meet all their requirements. The best cockroach food available online is G&T Country Living and Dubia Roach Chow. It also comes with repacked water crystals to keep your roaches hydrated.
|Items||Will Cockroach Eat it or Not|
|Other roaches||Yes! Oriental & German Cockroach eats other roaches|
|Clothes||Rarely when food is scarce|
|Dog food||Yes! Fondly|
|Cat food||Yes! Fondly|
|Hairs||Yes! Humans’ and pets’ hair|
|Feces||Yes! The Australian and American cockroaches live on it|
|Wood||Yes! Wood Cockroach eat rotting wood but not all|
|Spicy Items||Yes! Do not affect them|
|Sugar||They love it|
|Sealed Food||No! until the food is sealed|
|Ants||Yes! But dead ants|
|Baking Soda||Yes! But when mixed with other items|
|Insulation||Yes! When Starving|