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name applied to some 4,600 species of flat-bodied, oval insectsinsect,
invertebrate animal of the class Insecta of the phylum Arthropoda. Like other arthropods, an insect has a hard outer covering, or exoskeleton, a segmented body, and jointed legs. Adult insects typically have wings and are the only flying invertebrates.
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 in the order Blattodea. Cockroaches have long antennae, long legs adapted to running, and a flat extension of the upper body wall that conceals the head. They range from 1-4 in. to 3 in. (.6–7.6 cm) in length. Some cockroaches have two pairs of well-developed wings, the front pair covering the hind pair when at rest; others have reduced wings or none at all. In some species only the wings of the female are reduced or absent. Many species are able to fly well, although the familiar household species do not fly. Most cockroaches are shiny brown or black, but bright yellows, reds, and greens occur in some tropical species.

Cockroaches are night-active insects and most live in damp places; most are omnivorous scavengers. They are worldwide in distribution but are most numerous in the tropics. Most species live in the wild in their native regions, e.g., the wood cockroaches, species of the genus Parcoblatta, found under forest litter in the NE United States.

A few tropical and subtropical species that have been introduced into the temperate zone have become residents in human homes, where they multiply rapidly and are serious pests. They invade food supplies and emit foul-smelling glandular secretions. Their shape enables them to use tiny cracks as hiding places. They are popularly believed to be carriers of human diseases, although this has not been proved.

Cockroaches reproduce sexually. Their eggs are encased in capsules called oothecae, which in some species remain attached to the abdomen of the female until the eggs hatch. In a few species the ootheca is retained within the body of the female and the young are born live. Young resemble the adults except in size.

The large, dark Oriental cockroach, Blatta orientalis, is a cosmopolitan household species. The smaller German cockroach, or Croton bug, Blattella germanica, native to Europe, is the common urban cockroach of the NE United States. The American cockroach, Periplaneta americana, is a large light-reddish species that invades houses in the S United States.

The group as a whole is extremely old; fossil evidence indicates its extreme abundance during the Carboniferous period, about 350 million years ago. These ancient cockroaches were able to fly and were probably the first flying animals. Cockroaches are classified in several families of the phylum ArthropodaArthropoda
[Gr.,=jointed feet], largest and most diverse animal phylum. The arthropods include crustaceans, insects, centipedes, millipedes, spiders, scorpions, and the extinct trilobites.
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, class Insecta, order Blattodea.

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(invertebrate zoology)
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


any insect of the suborder Blattodea (or Blattaria), such as Blatta orientalis (oriental cockroach or black beetle): order Dictyoptera. They have an oval flattened body with long antennae and biting mouthparts and are common household pests
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Los ordenes Spirostreptida, Schizomida y Blattodea presentaron afinidad por la selva, Stemmiulida afinidad en el acahual maduro y Systellommatophora, Scolopendromorpha en el acahual joven.
Many studies have demonstrated that several species of plants of the Annonaceae family have insecticidal activity against several groups of arthropods (Acari, Blattodea, Coleoptera, Diptera, Hymenoptera, Hemiptera/Homopetera, Hemiptera/ Heteroptera, Lepidoptera) (CASTILLO-SANCHES et al., 2010; BROGLIO-MICHELETTI et al., 2009; MAGADUM et al., 2009).
This species is an endophagous egg parasite that has only been reported to parasitize the ootheca of the cockroaches Periplaneta americana (Linnaeus, 1758), Periplaneta australasiae (Fabricius, 1775), and Periplaneta brunnea Burmeister, 1838 (Blattodea, Blattidae) [19, 20].
The only reliable records of larvae from the Afrotropical Region are from crickets (Orthoptera) and from cockroach (Blattodea) nymphs (Smith & Cunningham-van Someren 1985).
Lokesh., Chow-Yang, Lee., and Kumar,Sudesh., 2009, "Polyhydroxyalkonate accumulating bacteria from the gut of higher termites Macrotermescarbonarius (Blattodea: Termitidae)," World J.
Cockroach phobia is Blattodephobia, a word grafted from phobia on Blattodea, the Order of cockroaches.
Blattodea Blattellidae Ischnoptera Blattodea Blattellidae Parcoblatta Hemiptera Aradidae Mezira Hemiptera Belostomatidae Lethocerus Hemiptera Berytidae Jalysus Hemiptera Coreidae Acanthocephala Hemiptera Coreidae Leptoglossus Hemiptera Corixidae Hesperocorixa Hemiptera Corixidae Sigara Hemiptera Corixidae Trichocorixa Hemiptera Gerridae Gerris Hemiptera Hydrometridae Hydrometra Hemiptera Lygaeidae Kleidocerys?
The hexapoda is represented by 13 orders (Ephemeroptera, Odonata, Blattodea, Isoptera, Orthoptera, Archaeorthoptera-Chresmodidae, Hemiptera, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera, Trichoptera, Neuroptera, Mecoptera and Diptera) and 40 families (Fregenal-Martinez et al., 2007).