Madagascar Hissing Cockroach

Basic Information:

Scientific Name: Gromphadorhina portentosa

Habitat: Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches live in the rainforest on the island of Madagascar, which is located off the east coast of Africa.

Diet: Madagascar hissing cockroaches are detritivores, meaning their diet consists of fresh or rotting fruits, vegetables and leaves.

Size: 0.2 to 0.3 feet long

Weight: Less than 0.1 pound

Lifespan: 1 to 3 years

Distribution Map:

I.U.C.N. Conservation Status:

What does this mean?

Least Concern – a species determined by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (I.U.C.N.) to be pervasive, abundant, and thriving.

Did You Know?!

  • Males hissing cockroaches have “horns” which are located on their prothorax, or the front most thorax on their body. Females do not.
  • Hissing cockroaches get their name from their ability to hiss. They make this sound by pushing air through spiracles, or tiny holes on their exoskeleton which they typically use to breathe through.
  • Hissing cockroaches have special pads on their feet, along with spines on their legs, that help them cling onto almost anything. They can even climb smooth surfaces such as large rocks or glass.
  • Hissing cockroaches are ovoviviparous: the female’s eggs hatch inside her body and she essentially gives birth to live young. Females have a special pouch on their bodies that holds the eggs for about two months, until they are ready to hatch.
  • Female hissing cockroaches are quite friendly amongst one another and actually form colonies where females and males coexist.