PEST PROFILE: Gisborne Cockroach
Size: 20 – 35 mm
Colour: Uniformly dark brown to black with white band around fringe
Other: No wings present. Flattened appearance. Very fast runner.
Pest Status: Not usually a resident pest but may sometimes enter buildings
particularly in very wet or cold weather. Objectionable appearance.
Habits: Food Source: Feeds on organic debris or other accessible food
Areas Infested: Generally lives outside but sometimes enters structures, but does not usually
infest food. Not usually found in offices or dwellings except as casual invader. sometimes
found in stores and service areas.
Harbourage: Often associated with timber or bark chips
Life Cycle: Eggs: Egg capsules (ootheca) of 5 – 6 mm deposited or retained until they hatch.
Nymphs: Take 2 – 4 months to develop into adults. Undergo several moults but less obvious
change as they approach adulthood.
Adult: Size is the main distinguishing feature from nymphs as wings are absent.
Distribution: Now widespread in North Island and upper South Island. An Australian cockroach first
recorded in New Zealand at Gisborne. Suspected arriving from Western Australia with
timber in the late 1940’s.
Prevention. Prevention of entry into facility, vigilance of incoming goods, pallets, cartons, firewood etc. Repair
any holes and gaps in walls, floors etc. Gaps larger than 2mm deep can permit entry. Check the floor covering is
fixed to the wall and that there are no gaps.
Food source. Gisborne Cockroach infestations are not a reflection of poor hygiene and sanitation conditions.
Removal of or access to food sources and potential harbourages inside and outside is helpful.
Control. Inspection, monitoring and treatment of harbourages, habitat when detected
combined with residual barrier applications with approved materials. Trapping and
specialised baiting have some application but rarely give full control