Wiggle Wonders- The Cuban Cockroach

Courtesy of aminoapps.com

Courtesy of aminoapps.com

Veronica Castillo

It is no surprise to hear that cockroaches are not winning any awards when it comes to being animal of the year. They are often regarded as disgusting vermin but most people do not realize just how amazing they can be. 

The Cuban Cockroach is only one of many but there are obviously numerous similarities between the Cuban Cockroach and roaches all over the world. You are probably used to the striped black, yellow, and brown six-legged insect that sprouts wings and breaks ankles like an offensive player as you try to get away. 

Remember the memes about going to squash a bug and then doing a full 180 when those flappers come out to play? 

If you are not afraid of them you probably just think they are gross. Fortunately, you will be happy to hear that the Cuban Cockroach is a refreshing change from a cockroach’s traditional appearance. An adult Cuban roach is often pale green and looks something like a butterfly chrysalis when seen from afar. 

They are unique among their brothers for their attraction to light and their common habitat of high places. To get to these high places they use their strong wings and fuzzy legs. 

Believe it or not, they are native to Cuba: surprise! And they love hanging out on plants or coconut trees. These roaches give vacationing in the tropics a whole new meaning, they would not be caught dead underground in some hole. 

You might call them the Queen Madonnas of cockroaches due to clean habitats and fine dining. 

Most are common as pets along with the Madagascar Hissing Cockroach. Do not let their appealing personality fool you though, they still love eating rotting flesh, fruit, and for all you paper eaters out there, now you have something in common with a cockroach. 

They are not known to bite which makes them even easier to handle and they are predominant in the south where they can stay nice and toasty. 

You will only find the slightly uglier versions of cockroaches here in Illinois, sorry. But if you ever want to head down in the swamps of Mississippi, at least you will not have to worry about the Cuban roach sneaking up in your house. They have a green thumb and you will not have to worry about harvesting your garden because they will do it for you…. in their stomach. 

While these roaches may be prefered over others, they are still at their core, cockroaches. They molt and have spiracles, tubes they use to breathe through their skin, and will probably still be here long after we humans are gone. So next time, before you just squash one, think of all the amazing things about them and others like them.

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