Garden Talk

with Rebecca Jordi

Q: What is this green insect? It looks like a little fish to me.

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A:   Thanks for bringing in this interest insect. The insect is an adult Cuban cockroach, Panchlora nivea. It is interesting to note the immature (nymphs) Cuban cockroaches are brown in color and change to the pale green color after several molts. They are also known as banana cockroaches. Cuban cockroaches are generally not household pests as they prefer to live in leaf litter, under logs and around landscape shrubbery in the organic mulches.  Since they are originally from warmer climates they often do not survive the cold winters here in Northeast Florida.  Like many other cockroaches, they are active during the evening hours but have been known to be take flight around porch lights. Keeping any of the outdoor cockroaches out of the house can be done by ensuring tight seals around windows and doors as well as caulking around bathroom and kitchen drain pipes.  One other interesting note is because of their attractive color, they have been known to be kept as pets in sealed aquariums or kept as food for insectivores – not my cup of tea, but hey, to each his own.  Cuban_cockroach

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