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Madagascar Hissing Cockroach

Gromphadorhina portentosa

The hissing Cockroach are native to the island of Madagascar off the coast of Africa. They produce a hiss sounds due to forcefully pushed air through their spiracles into the trachea. They hiss at times of defense, communication, courtship & mating.

Range & Habitat

Extant to Madagascar, the hissing cockroach live upon forest floors, where they inhabit rotten logs, leaf litter and other detritus. 

Conservation Status: Least Concern


The hissing cockroach is an opportunistic feeder, feeding upon fruit and plant material, prominently during nocturnal hours. 

Life Span

2 to 5 years

Fun Facts about the Madagascar Hissing Cockroach

  • Males look different compared to the females. Males have large protrusion on their thorax called pronotal humps. Females have very small bumps with a smooth thorax.
  •  Males are also known to be aggressive due to establishing territories and thus defending from other males, while females are quite social and do not fight with others.
  •  Females are ovoviviparous, thus give birth to live young & can produce up to 60 nymphs.


Nebraska Institute of Agriculture & Natural Resources. Department of Entomology. Madagascar Hissing Cockroach. Madagascar Hissing Cockroach | Department of Entomology ( retrieved August 18, 2021.

D. Clark & D. Shanklin, University of Kentucky Entomology. Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches. Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches | Entomology ( retrieved August 18, 2021.

Updated August 18, 2021