Skip to Content

How many babies do roaches make a day?

Cockroaches are known for their rapid reproduction and ability to produce many offspring. But just how prolific are they? How many babies can a single roach make in a day? Read on to learn more about roach reproduction and get estimates on their daily baby production.

How Cockroaches Reproduce

Cockroaches reproduce through oviparity, meaning females lay eggs that later hatch into nymphs. After mating with a male, a female roach will produce an egg case called an ootheca. This egg case can contain up to 50 eggs at once. She then deposits the ootheca in a safe location, often in crevices or cracks.

Cockroach eggs hatch after an incubation period. For common household species like the German cockroach, this is around 28 days. However, the incubation time can vary from 14 days to over a month depending on factors like temperature and species.

Once hatched, roach nymphs will go through a series of molts as they grow. With each successive molt, they become more similar to adults. It takes around 100-200 days for roaches to reach full maturity and become capable of reproducing.

Roach Reproductive Potential

Cockroaches have an incredibly high reproductive potential. If given ample food, water, warmth and space, roach populations can explode rapidly.

Here are some key facts about roach reproduction:

  • Females can produce multiple oothecae in their lifetime. Some species average 1 ootheca per month.
  • Each ootheca contains around 16 to 50 eggs on average depending on species.
  • Females may produce over 15 offspring in her lifetime.
  • Nymphs mature quickly and can themselves reproduce in 2-4 months time.

This high fecundity allows roaches to bounce back quickly even after population setbacks. Without adequate control measures, just a few roaches can turn into thousands in months.

Estimates of Daily Baby Production

So just how many babies can a female cockroach produce per day? This can vary based on factors like:

  • Roach species
  • Age of female
  • Environmental conditions
  • Food and water availability

However, we can come up with estimates based on known reproductive data for major roach species:

German Cockroach

German cockroaches (Blattella germanica) are a common household pest. Females produce an average of 1 ootheca per month. With around 40 eggs per ootheca, that equates to 40 new eggs per day on average.

American Cockroach

American roaches (Periplaneta americana) produce oothecae much less frequently – around 1 every 6 weeks. But their oothecae are larger, containing around 14-16 eggs each. Overall, they average around 7-10 new eggs produced per day.

Oriental Cockroach

Oriental roaches (Blatta orientalis) are slower reproducers than German roaches. Females produce an ootheca about once every 60 days. With around 16 eggs per ootheca, that works out to around 1 new egg produced per day on average.

Brownbanded Cockroach

Brownbanded cockroaches (Supella longipalpa) produce an ootheca about once per month. Each ootheca contains around 18 eggs. So females produce around 18 new eggs per day on average.

Here is a table summarizing the average daily reproduction rates:

Species Avg. Eggs Per Ootheca Oothecae Per Day Avg. Eggs Per Day
German 40 1 per month 40
American 14-16 1 per 6 weeks 7-10
Oriental 16 1 per 60 days 1
Brownbanded 18 1 per month 18

So daily egg production can range from just 1-2 eggs per day for slower reproducers like oriental roaches, up to 40 or more for rapid reproducers like German roaches.

Factors Affecting Roach Reproduction

Keep in mind that these are estimates and roach reproduction can be higher or lower based on conditions. Here are some key factors that influence roach breeding rates:


Cockroaches thrive in warm environments between 70-90° F. Higher temperatures within this range accelerate their reproduction. Cooler temperatures below 60°F can slow down their breeding.

Food and Water

Abundant food sources and moisture allow roaches to put more energy into reproduction. When either is scarce, breeding slows down as roaches focus on survival instead.


Cluttered spaces with lots of cracks and crevices for hiding provide safe habitat for breeding. Open exposed areas limit reproduction. Competition for resources and space also limits breeding potential.


Younger roaches that have just reached adulthood have higher reproductive potential. As roaches age, they produce fewer oothecae over time.

Roach Reproduction Habits By Species

Now let’s take a more detailed look at the reproduction cycles of some major roach species:

German Cockroach

  • Oothecae produced approximately every 28 days
  • Each ootheca contains around 40 eggs
  • Ootheca is carried protruding from the abdomen for about 2 days then glued in place
  • Eggs hatch in 28 days
  • Nymphs mature in 100-200 days
  • Average 500 offspring per female in lifetime

American Cockroach

  • Oothecae produced approximately every 45 days
  • Each ootheca contains around 14-16 eggs
  • Ootheca protruding from abdomen for 4-5 days then deposited in safe location
  • Eggs hatch in 58 days
  • Nymphs mature in 600-800 days
  • Produces around 350 offspring in lifetime

Brownbanded Cockroach

  • Oothecae produced about every 34 days
  • Each ootheca contains around 18 eggs
  • Carries ootheca for 24 hours before gluing in place
  • Eggs hatch in 50 days
  • Nymphs mature in 200 days
  • May produce over 300 offspring in lifetime

Oriental Cockroach

  • Oothecae produced about every 60 days
  • Each ootheca contains around 16 eggs
  • Ootheca carried for 24-36 hours before depositing
  • Incubation around 55 days
  • Nymphs mature in 300-800 days
  • May produce 100-150 offspring in lifetime

Impacts of High Reproduction Rates

The high reproductive capacity of roaches contributes greatly to their pest status and why they can be so challenging to control.

Impacts include:

  • Fast population growth – Just a few roaches can multiply into thousands within months.
  • Quick recovery after control attempts – Roach populations can bounce back in little time after insecticide applications or cleaning.
  • Spread to other areas – Nymphs and males will disperse to new locations, expanding the infestation.
  • Difficult eradication – Achieving complete roach elimination is extremely difficult due to ongoing reproduction.

Preventing Roach Reproduction

Stop cockroach breeding and reproduction through IPM – integrated pest management. IPM involves multiple tactics such as:

  • Reducing food, water and clutter that supports breeding
  • Killing adults before they can reproduce
  • Applying insect growth regulators (IGRs) that prevent nymphs from reaching maturity
  • Use baits and targeted applications rather than broad spraying
  • Fix structural issues like leaks and gaps that allow infestations
  • Repeat control methods to continually reduce the population

Consistent monitoring and IPM keeps roach populations low and limits their reproductive output. This makes roaches far less difficult to control over time.


Cockroaches are capable of producing anywhere from 1 to 40 offspring per day on average depending on species. Their rapid reproduction enables roach infestations to multiply and spread quickly. But through diligent sanitation, targeted insecticide applications, and fixing conditions that enable breeding, roach reproduction can be minimized as part of an effective IPM plan.