Do Cockroaches Have Queens?

Cockroaches seem to be a lot like ants, with similar types of colonies and behaviors.

Ants have queens, but do cockroaches have queens?

Many people are under the impression that cockroaches have queens, but they aren’t a social type of insect. This means that the following is true:

  • Cockroaches have no queens or kings
  • One family member is established as the main insect
  • Termites were recently added to the cockroach family, and they have queens and kings

So, let’s see why cockroaches don’t have queens.

Do Cockroaches Have Queens? Every Female Cockroach Breeds

Because female cockroaches all contribute to the reproduction of the cockroach family, a queen is not needed for the survival of the species. Many people have seen a female cockroach running around with an egg case on her back where she carries the eggs.

What is worse is that some species of female cockroach don’t need a male cockroach to reproduce; they can do it all on their own.

This process of reproducing without the help of a male is called parthenogenesis, and cockroaches are one of few living organisms that have this ability. Think Virgin Mary type stuff, but roaches.

What is worse is that female cockroach don’t need a male cockroach to reproduce; they can do it all on their own. 

This is not good, which means that even if you find a way to get rid of all the males, roaches can still reproduce. They can live for hours and even reproduce without a head!

This survivability is the precise reason why it is so difficult to get rid of cockroaches if they infest an area.

As you can see, there is no need for a special queen and king to help with the breeding and reproduction of cockroaches. This fact is also one of the reasons why cockroaches can infest any area so quickly and become a pest that needs to be removed.

For instance, a female of the German cockroach species can reproduce up to 300 new babies in her lifetime.

The lifespan of most cockroaches is about one full year, which means you can have a big problem very quickly.

How Do Cockroaches Reproduce?

Even though female cockroaches can reproduce without the help of a male, they still mate with a male cockroach.

This also means that they have mating seasons which are normally during the summer months, and cockroaches are also more active during warmer seasons.

Even though female cockroaches can reproduce without the help of a male, they still mate with a male cockroach.

This hardy insect became even harder to get rid of because it can keep reproducing even without a male.

How Do Cockroaches Mate?

They do use sexual reproduction for breeding, and if a male wants to mate, he flaps his wings so the female can see. The male cockroach also excretes a sweet substance that contains sugar from its glands to attract the female cockroach.

If this substance is sweet enough to the female cockroach’s taste, she will crawl on his back, and they will mate. As mentioned, cockroaches breed in the warmer seasons. They will also breed in autumn and spring but not as much.

Cockroaches also do not like the cold. That is why you will not see them often during the colder winter months. 

Roaches Only Need To Mate Once

There is also the fact that female cockroaches do not need to mate continually to breed and reproduce. The female can then store the male sperm inside her body so she can use it at a later stage.

This simply means that she only needs to mate once and use the sperm later to fertilize the eggs whenever she needs to. This system works great for them, seeing that cockroaches are preyed on by many other larger animals like rats, cats, spiders, lizards, etc., and the males can die out quickly.

For humans, this is bad news, as it means that female cockroaches have a few choices at their disposal when it comes to breeding and reproduction.

Are Cockroaches That Fly Queens?

There is a myth that only roach queens can fly, but that is not true. Both the male and the female cockroach have wings. But not all cockroach species can fly; some species use their wings to glide, and some jump like crickets.

The American cockroach is one species that uses its wings to glide from a higher position to a lower spot. Other flying cockroach species include the Smokey Brown, Pennsylvania wood cockroaches, and the Australian and Asian cockroaches.

Because most of these flying cockroach species only fly at night, you will not easily see one when they fly. Like most other cockroach species, these flying cockroaches are nocturnal, so they move around only at night or in the dark.

The most common species in the world is the German cockroach, and they do not fly at all, even though they have wings. Because they reproduce so quickly and are not very large, they are considered the greatest cockroach pest around the world.

As you can see, the myth that flying cockroaches are queens is not true at all. Most adult cockroaches have wings. Fortunately, those cockroaches that are mostly infesting our homes are those that cannot fly, not that they are a lesser threat.

The Exception To The Rule

There is only one exception to the rule when it comes to a cockroach queen and king, and that is with termites. As termites have been reclassified to become part of the cockroach family, they are the only cockroach species with a queen.

They also have a king, and the queen and king are responsible for the reproduction and the breeding of new generations. This means that there are now more than 4500 different cockroach species worldwide, which is even worse than before.

Inside the termite nest, the sole purpose of the queen is to lay eggs every day of her life. A termite or ant queen is more like an ovary than a ruler with a crown.

As soon as the king and queen find each other, they will start reproducing the eggs to increase their population.

The termite queen can lay up to 30,000 eggs in one day, making them even worse than other cockroach species.

Roach Removal

It is not easy to get rid of cockroaches, but it can be done! Make use of professional pest controller services for the best results.


As you can see, there are normally no queen or king cockroaches. All female cockroaches can lay eggs and reproduce in an extremely efficient manner.

Hopefully, this information will help in your quest to control those pesky cockroaches after an infestation in your home.

Even though they are ugly and we do not like them, they are an important part of the overall ecology.