Baby Cockroach vs Bed Bug

By Perry Benani

Sometimes bed bugs are confused with baby cockroaches because they have similar coloring.

I will provide a clear guide on baby cockroach vs bed bug.

These are some of the most common types of cockroaches: American, German, Brown-banded, and Oriental. Cockroaches are named for their two pairs of wings and advanced mouthparts designed for chewing or piercing solid materials such as wood and paper. 

Near-adult roaches have a variety of colors from reddish-brown to dark brown, and from tan to black. They haven’t developed their roach wings yet and are commonly mistaken for bed bugs.

Early detection of bed bug infestation will greatly increase your chance of eradicating this pest from your home. Taking precautions before infestation escalates helps keep costs and time down. Bed bugs are some of the bugs that look like baby roaches.

Many are unaware of the fact that bed bugs and cockroaches share certain common characteristics. Both, at some point in their life-cycle, can look similar.

In this guide, I’ll be showing you the difference between bed bugs and cockroaches. Ensure you know the pest you are dealing with in order to proceed with the correct treatment.

What Is A Bed Bug?

What bed bugs look like: 

  • Flattened, oval, body shape
  • Reddish-brown color
  • 1/5 inch long
  • Have short, thick antennae
  • Dark, protruding eyes
  • They have wings attached to each side of their heads
  • Young bed bugs are similar to adults, a little larger than a sesame seed 
  • Baby bed bugs are in yellowish-white color

What Is A Cockroach? Baby Cockroach vs Bed Bug

What cockroaches look like: 

  • Their antennas are much longer and thinner
  • Has dark brown to reddish mahogany color
  • Flattened, oval body shape
  • About an inch and a half – two inches long
  • With large eyes and membranous wings
  • With a tail-like structure on the abdomen
  • Immature cockroaches are smaller and has no wings

What Do Baby Roaches Look Like?

They are called nymphs when they are young. When they are babies, they can be white or gray depending on what species they are. The younger they are, the lighter they are. When they hatch from an egg, baby roaches are typically white.

As they grow, they become darker. Nymphs may have wings or stripes. The juvenile stage of the roach may just look like a miniature version of the adult stage since they are not nymphs yet.

Baby roaches are not a good sign in a house because they mean there is probably a nest somewhere in the house that contains even more of these pests. Cockroaches lay multiple eggs at a time, so if one baby is present, it is likely that there will be others.

Cockroach Vs Bed Bug Bites

Both bed bugs and cockroaches can bite but bed bugs bite humans more often than cockroaches. Their bites leave an itchy red mark on the skin. Bed bugs are blood-dependent creatures and depend on human blood to survive.

Cockroaches rarely bite humans, they’re not blood-sucking insects, they eat food leftovers, trash, and animal feces. If there are other sources of food that are more easily accessible to roaches then they will not generally bite people.

If they are unable to find any other food sources, they might still try to bite humans.

Are They Fighter Or Runner?

Bed bugs and roaches will both try to avoid humans, they will generally run away during the day and will hide underthings.

If you try to squash either of those bugs, they will not fight and try to hide, bed bugs have no ability to fight. Cockroaches will always try to escape and hideaway instead of fighting.

Can Bed Bugs And Roaches Fly?

Bed bugs are small, flat, and oval-shaped, they have no functional wings, so they can not fly. And they can not jump too. They move from one place to another by crawling.

Over 50 types of cockroaches live in the U.S. Many of them have wings and use for flight, while others rarely do so. There are a few species that are capable of flight for a short distance, while others use their wings to glide.

Asian, brown, smoky brown, and wood roaches are very capable fliers, but American cockroaches use their wings to glide. Australian cockroaches can be found in coastal areas, primarily the Gulf Coast. They are skilled flyers.

Asia cockroaches, which are largely found in warm areas such as Florida and resemble the German cockroach, can fly. The Cuban roach is a full-sized, brightly colored cockroach, green in color, and has the capability to fly.

When They Are Visible: Day Or Night?

Both bed bugs and cockroaches are active during the night and sleep during the day. 

Bed Bugs usually feed at night when humans are sleeping in their beds. They, during the day, digest the blood sucked from humans at night, lay eggs or stay without moving, crawling wherever they hide. If you disturb them during the day, they will just run away and try to hide again.

Roaches will crawl to locate food sources at night without anyone disturbing them. Roaches are most likely going to be seen in your house during the day, in comparison to bed bugs. 

They are quick and nimble for their size and, being on the ground, they’re less likely to be accidentally squashed by people’s legs. Roaches should be seen during the day only when absolutely necessary and must stay in their hiding places.

baby cockroach vs bed bug

Do They Spread Diseases?

Bed bugs are not known to spread diseases. They can, however, cause itchy skin and loss of sleep. Sometimes scratching the itch may lead to a secondary skin infection in some cases.

Cockroaches on the other hand may spread several diseases. They may serve as a reservoir for a wide variety of bacteria, including salmonella, staphylococcus, and streptococcus. A cockroach can also carry viruses like the poliovirus.

Do Roaches Eat Bed Bugs?

Among the most common household pests are cockroaches and bed bugs. If you have both, it is a bad situation, so you may wonder whether cockroaches can get rid of a bed bug infestation at the same time.

The cockroaches will eat bed bugs. Bed bugs reproduce faster than cockroaches can eat them, so they won’t be able to reduce their numbers. Cockroaches and bed bugs live in different parts of the house, so you could have both at the same time. Cockroaches like kitchens, whereas bed bugs like bedrooms.

Although cockroaches eat bed bugs, they can’t be relied upon as a pest control method. In order to eliminate both infestations simultaneously, you should use pesticides or heat treatments.

Do Cockroaches Kill Bed Bugs?

Since cockroaches eat rotting or decomposing matter, they will eat virtually anything. The size of bed bugs is similar to apple seeds, so cockroaches can easily consume them. But do not rely on them to remove bed bug infestation.

Getting professional help from a pest exterminator is always advised in order to effectively eliminate an entire bed bug colony. In just a few short days, bed bugs can multiply from a couple to hundreds, so acting with time is essential.

Are Baby Roaches A Bad Sign?

A baby cockroach isn’t cute. And there is no time to waste. Take action if you find one. But why?

Even one baby roach can signal a much bigger problem. It’s one you’ll want to address as soon as possible. You can protect both your home and possibly your family’s health by taking certain steps now.

The presence of baby roaches can be harmful. Whether they’re big or small, roaches aren’t something you want in your house. Cockroaches are gross. The babies are just as dangerous. Their days are spent crawling around filthy places and eating rotten food. 

This causes them to pick up bacteria, viruses, mold, fungi, and worms, which they then deposit.

So if you have found one, most probably there are many others somewhere else. You really need to take care of that infestation as soon as possible.

Do Baby Cockroaches Bite?

Nymphs eat the same stuff as adults. Cockroaches eat different stuff depending on their species. In most cases, cockroaches won’t bite humans.

Unlike other pests such as bed bugs, they do not feed on blood.

An extreme cockroach infestation may result in bites, either from nymphs or adults. It has been reported that cockroaches consume food residue from sleeping humans. This can result in the roach unintentionally biting the skin.

Bugs That Look Like Baby Roaches – One of Them Bites

Here are 5 bugs that look like baby roaches:

  • Bed bugs
  • Red flour beetle
  • Carpet beetles
  • Booklice or Psocids
  • Drugstore beetle

Baby roaches are small. Baby roaches may look like other bugs to the untrained eye.

The wrong pest control methods will be selected if you cannot distinguish between baby roaches and the look-alikes.

Therefore, you will not be able to get rid of bugs that are not baby roaches.

As a result, there is an increase in bugs that look like baby roaches.

The bugs are so similar to baby roaches that it is almost impossible to tell them apart.

Of the five baby roaches that look like these, the ones that bite and feed on your blood are bed bugs.

The Baby German Cockroach

What do baby German roaches look like?

Baby German cockroaches have a flat, hard-shelled body, six spiny legs, a distinct head, and horizontal bands across their bodies (when closely examined). Like adult German cockroaches, it has two long, thin antennae. However, unlike the adult, it does not have wings.

Generally, it has a dark brown color with a lighter brown color running down its back. German cockroach nymphs will never be darker than the brown you see. During the next sixty days, it will molt several times, initially appearing white as it emerges from its old shell, and darkening (to lighter shades of brown) as its new shell hardens.

The Baby American Cockroach

What do baby American roaches look like?

The baby American cockroach will have six spiny legs, long thin antennae, and a flattened, hard-shelled body that has three sections. 

As with adult cockroaches, they have appendages known as cerci at the base of their bodies (similar to but smaller than those of earwigs), but unlike adults, they have no wings.

When examined closely, one can see that the segments across their backs have darker colored edging. What is the size of a baby American Cockroach? Nymphs are as small as a penny (under 2cm) and grow to an average length of 4cm.

The Baby Oriental Cockroach

What do baby Oriental roaches look like?

Baby Oriental cockroaches will have six spiny legs, medium-length antennae, and a shiny, flattened hard shell. Like adult Oriental cockroaches, they do not have wings, but they do have cerci.

They have a reddish-brown color and a distinct pattern of light and dark bands on their bodies.

What is the size of a baby Oriental Cockroach? By the time they molt for the first time, nymphs are about 6mm long, about the size of a grain of rice.

The Baby Brown Banded Cockroach

What do baby Brown-Banded roaches look like?

The baby brown-banded cockroach has six spiny legs, long antennae, and a shiny, hard-shelled body. The cockroaches are tan to dark brown in color and have two broad brownish bands on their abdomens.

What is the size of a baby brown-banded cockroach? Even adults are quite small. Before their first molt, nymphs will be about 3mm long – about the size of a grain of rice.

The Baby White Roach

What do baby white roaches look like?

Baby white cockroaches are not a separate species, but they are rare. These are either newly hatched roaches or roaches that have shed their old shells and are in the process of molting. 

Often mistaken for worms, larvae, or a strange, wingless albino cockroach, these temporarily pure white roaches are easy to identify after you realize what you’ve seen.

How to identify baby roaches?

Put on gloves and try to catch or kill roaches if you can if you believe that there are baby roaches in your home. The fact that German roaches and Brown-banded roaches are very small even as adults is the first clue that it may be one of them. Next look at color, along with some of the distinctive markings described above and elsewhere.

In the event that a cockroach is what you’ve found, you should not only identify it but also take steps to protect your home. 

You can also refer to this short guide for roach elimination.

I hope this guide will help you identify the type of bugs you have found so that you can take the correct action to eliminate them.

Thanks for reading and I wish you bug-free life.

Perry Benani