The Greatest American Cockroach

The good thing about Florida is that the heat makes it an ideal environment for all sorts of insects. That’s not really a good thing to me, but I’m pretty sure the bugs like it. At least they seem to when they’re flying into my house and stinging me. I’ve been surprised by the fact that there seems to be less mosquitoes when I’m outside these days, but somehow at night one always seems to have made it into my house to terrorize me while I’m trying to relax.

You probably know this, but Florida is famous for it’s palmetto bugs. Up until yesterday, I had apparently confused the palmetto bug and the American cockroach. It’s an easy thing to do, but now that I’ve straightened this out I thought I’d share the information with you.

A palmetto bug is the disgusting segmented creature I find when I’m pulling up weeds in the garden. They’re slow and look like this:


I figure you can image what this thing looks like when not being eaten by a lizard. While they are horrible they aren’t nearly as horrible as this:


This is the American cockroach. It is the enormous, disease ridden abomination that flew into my house carrying an egg sack the other night. Yes, it flew, like a fighter jet straight from Hell. If you ask him, my husband would tell you it was about two inches long, but if you ask me I’ll tell you it was about a foot long. It landed in the corner of the living room right above my head. I would’ve taken a picture of it, but I was too busy screaming like a little girl to do that.

My husband believes in being kind to insects and prefers the catch and release method of dealing with them, but this one was too fast for that. With me yelling “Just kill it,” in the background he decided to use the electric fly swatter on it. While the electric fly swatter works well on flies and mosquitoes, it is no match for giant pregnant cockroaches. It just slowed her down a bit so my husband could catch her and set her free in the backyard with all her buddies.

Our backyard seems to be a haven for these giant roaches. Herds of them buzz around in the air at night. They give me nightmares. I hope none of them decide to venture inside again.

Palmetto bug photo by kthypryn

American cockroach photo by Gary Alpert