Giant Burrowing Cockroach
Native to the tropical forests of Australia, the Giant Burrowing Cockroach is one of the largest cockroaches in the world today. It takes its name from its preference for burrowing into the soil, where it may venture as far as one metre down.
How big can it get?
Giant Burrowing Cockroaches shed their shell 12 times before they are fully grown, at which point they may be as long as 8 centimetres (3 inches) and weigh somewhere in the region of 35 grams. This makes it the heaviest cockroach alive today. Only Blaberus giganteus (or simply, the Giant Cockroach) is longer.
What does it eat?
This recycling specialist loves nothing more than dining on dead gum leaves and other sweet-tasting foliage. As such it plays an important role in the ecosystem, proving it is anything but a pest.
How does it hunt?
Due to its diet it has no need to hunt. It does however have its own dining room in its burrow which is separate to its living area. Think of this as a bug with etiquette.
How dangerous is it?
This species of cockroach offers no danger to humans. In fact, many choose to keep these giant bugs as pets (see video).
How many are left?
Exact numbers are unknown although it is considered that population levels are stable.
It may be large but it is also one of the cleanest cockroaches you are likely to find, a key factor in it being a popular pet choice. Tiny mites living on its back are responsible for keeping it clean.