Baby Roach: How Big Are They, And What Do They Look Like? (With Photos)

What does a baby roach look like? If you are looking for pictures of baby roaches, we are here to help! We will help you learn to ID baby roaches through this tutorial. We will mainly be referring to German baby cockroaches and American roaches, although we will mention wood and oriental roaches as well.

Roaches have a short lifecycle that involves going from eggs (egg case) to nymphs to adults. After a cockroach hatches from an egg, it will be a 1st instar nymph, then go through up to fourteen more stages before emerging as an adult.

The lifecycle all depends on what species of roach you are dealing with. The German cockroaches will molt 5-6 times, whereas the American insects are known to molt up to 14 times. Reference: Entomology Department at UF

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baby roach what do they look like

What Does A Baby Cockroach Look Like?

Cockroach nymphs have two defining features: first, they have 2 cerci (prongs) on the back end, and second, they are wingless. You can see these prongs in many of the photos below. Here we will compare the German cockroach baby to some of the other species of roach babies.

baby roaches - german cockroach baby and wood roach baby
A baby roach has two cerci on the back end.

Here are the Stages of Roaches

Roach egg case – Instar (nymph) 1 – Instar (nymph) 2 – Instar (nymph) 3 – Instar (nymph) 4 – Instar (nymph)5 – (nymph)6 (and so on) – Adult Roach

As you can see, roaches, like bed bugs, do not go through a larval stage like carpet beetles, fleas, and many other insects. A baby roach looks similar to an adult; but smaller.

A cockroach will remove its outer shell between each nymph (instar) stage. From egg to baby cockroach to adult, it will take about 100 days for German cockroaches and up to 600 days for American roaches.

Keep in mind that only adult roaches can lay more eggs. You’ll need to keep a close eye on your electronics if you have baby roaches. You can learn more about: how to get roaches out of electronics.

baby roaches shed their skin
A white roach is a baby roach that has shed its skin.

Keep in mind that you may see some white roaches that are in the middle of a transformation. You may find these roach skins lying around your kitchen cabinets, appliances, bedroom, or anywhere you see adult roaches.

What Do Just Born Baby Roaches Look Like?

How Big Are Baby roaches

If you find a roach nymph, it will be reddish brown or white. One thing to look for is the long antennas and 2 prongs on the back end.

The hue may depend on your eyesight and the other things in the environment reflecting light off the baby roach.

Once the baby roaches start scavenging for food, their color will become darker. Furthermore, A just born baby roach’s only mission is to eat; it is programmed into its DNA to begin scavenging for a meal. So once it hatches, it will start to look for food.

What’s The Color Of Baby Cockroaches?

A baby roach’s (cockroach nymph) color is amber and brown; however, if you see one in the middle of a nymph stage that is shedding its skin, it will be whitish, straw-colored, to translucent.

How Big Are Baby Roaches?

Baby roaches - what do they look like

When cockroaches first hatch, they are pretty small but not as small as baby bed bugs. The roach nymphs clock in at 3 to 14 mm. Note; the German roaches will grow to 13 to 16 mm in adulthood. In comparison, American adult roaches are 35 – 41 mm in length.

Furthermore, all cockroach species are visible to the naked eye, but it might be challenging to see the early stages if you do not have good eyesight.

A just-born baby German roach is 3 mm, and then they increase a few millimeters until they reach adulthood. In comparison, an American roach nymph starts at 6 mm and grows to over 30 mm.

Baby Roach Size Chart (German)

These are approximate sizes, and the actual baby roaches will be slightly bigger or smaller, depending on their food supply.

  • Egg case (8 mm long).
  • 1st stage German roach nymph (3 mm).
  • 2nd stage German roach nymph (5 mm).
  • 3rd stage German roach nymph (8 mm).
  • 4th stage German roach nymph (10 mm).
  • 5th stage German roach nymph (12 mm)
  • 6th stage German roach nymph (14 mm)

How Long Does It Take for a Roach to Grow?

The German roach takes about 100 days to go from an egg to an adult. In contrast, the American cockroach has a longer lifecycle. It takes the American roach about 600 days and 12 – 14 nymphal stages.

5 Facts About Baby Roaches

  • Baby roaches, known as nymphs, can look very different from adult roaches. They are often smaller and lighter in color and may not have fully developed wings.

  • Nymphs go through several stages of development before they become adults. During this time, they shed their exoskeletons several times, which allows them to grow.

wood roach nymph with a recent shed skin

  • All baby roaches have particular sensory organs that help them detect food sources, mates, and potential predators in their environment. Roaches can easily climb walls due to their specialized anatomy.

  • Nymphs (and newly molted roaches) are more vulnerable to predators than adult roaches, so they often hide in cracks and crevices to avoid being eaten.

  • Some species of roaches have maternal instincts and will care for their young. The mother roach will carry her eggs in an ootheca capsule, protecting and caring for her young after they hatch.

How Many Babies Can A Roach Have?

Well, when it comes to roaches, they are known for being prolific breeders. ???? So, how many babies can a cockroach have? Brace yourself because the answer might surprise you. Depending on the species, a female roach can lay anywhere from 10 to 40 eggs at a time.

And, get this; she can do this up to 10 times in her lifetime! That means a single female roach can give birth to hundreds of offspring. And, if you have multiple female cockroaches in your home, well, you do the math. It’s no wonder that roach infestations can be so difficult to control!

Is a Roach Nymph the Same Thing as a Baby Roach?

Yes, the terms roach nymph, baby cockroach, and cockroach instar are interchangeable. So if you see an article referring to the cockroach stages as instars, then know that they are the same as a baby roach and cockroach nymph.

Do Baby Cockroaches Bite?

Baby cockroaches do generally not bite humans. However, they may still try to feed on dead skin cells that your body sheds naturally. While a baby cockroach’s bite is unlikely to cause physical injury, the bacteria and germs that live on their bodies can transmit diseases and make people ill if the roach makes contact with an open wound or your mouth. 

Therefore, it’s best to keep them away from any food you plan to consume and be wary of their presence if you have young children in your home.

What Are Some Baby Roach Look-Alikes?

Baby roaches are often mistaken for bed bug nymphs. One clue is to look at their droppings. Roach droppings will be grainy and stuck in places where there’s food. On the other hand, bed bug poop will be concentrated in areas where you spend a lot of time (like a bed).

We are a pest inspection company, and we often will ID baby roaches for our clients who thought the bug they found was a bed bug.

A whole host of bugs look like roaches, beetles, crickets, & waterbugs. Check out our entire list of bugs that look like cockroaches.

Do Baby Cockroaches Fly?

No, as the nymphs are molting through their various stages, they do not have developed wings. However, the roaches may have wing pads that eventually turn into wings.

Do Baby Roaches Lay Eggs?

No, baby roaches cannot lay eggs. Only the female cockroach, after she has mated, can lay an egg case. The average American roach will produce about 16 eggs per case, with the entire lifetime total being around 150 eggs.

Baby roaches come out of eggs which are housed in a ootheteca. Roach capsule next to a paperclip.

Now the German roaches produce a lot more ootheca than the American species. The German cockroaches will have about 30-40 eggs in each ootheca, which can make the population explode quickly.

What Do Baby Roaches Eat?

Cockroaches enjoy plants, feces, other insects, and meat. Baby roaches are omnivorous and will munch on various food sources. While other insects may focus primarily on one type of food source, baby roaches can eat almost anything. 

So if you are wondering, “what do cockroaches eat?” If available, they’ll feast on fruits, vegetables, soap, oil, dead animals, cat poop, cereals, and meats. Additionally, the babies will scavenge since they are growing. 

How to Get Rid of Adult And Baby Roaches?

Getting rid of adult and baby cockroaches can be challenging, but it is possible. Start by thoroughly cleaning your home to remove the food and water sources they rely on. Learn more about what causes roaches in a clean house?

Wipe down appliances and surfaces with a disinfectant, pour bleach down drains, mop floors, vacuum carpets, and upholstered furniture. 

Additionally, you can use sticky traps and baits, like Advion, to kill the roaches. Finally, seal off potential entry points in your home so that more cockroaches cannot enter. 

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With the right combination of preventative measures and extermination methods, you can get rid of adult and baby cockroaches for good!

Do Roach Nymphs Come Out During the Day?

You may see roach nymphs during the day for many different reasons. Some of the reasons might be because one of your neighbors put out some repellents, and they are looking for a new place to call home. Or you have just moved into a new home/apartment, and they are exploring their surroundings looking for food.

Other reasons include if the roach infestation is significant, they may be forced out to scavenge for a meal during the day.

Where Do Baby Roaches Hide?

Like bed bugs, baby roaches hide in cracks and crevices. However, you will find them in areas closer to where people eat since they need to scavenge for crumbs and not blood.

Some of the most common places you’ll find baby roaches are behind outlets, cabinets, under counters, drains, behind baseboards, and inside your appliances. It’s horrifying to think about them infesting the mechanics of your microwave or fridge, but they like the warmth.

Final Thoughts for Roaches: Everything You Ever Wanted To Know

In conclusion, the life cycle of a roach is longer than many other insects, like bed bugs. However, cockroaches lay more eggs and therefore create more babies.

Baby roaches look just like their adult counterparts, but they don’t have wings; they do have cerci and are much smaller than adults. You can quickly identify baby roaches by knowing their environment and looking for egg cases, and defining features like cerci.

It is crucial to know what to look for to get control of any infestation problem quickly. Correctly identifying baby roaches will save you time and money down the road regarding pest control efforts. You don’t want to treat bed bugs if you have cockroaches. Ultimately, learning all you can about baby roaches will make all the difference as you work toward a better roach-free life!

So if you ever wanted to learn about identifying baby cockroaches, this is your ultimate guide!

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