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MADAGASCAR HISSING COCKROACHES
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Gromphadorhina portentosa
HABITAT: Tropical forests of Madagascar
CONSERVATION STATUS: Least Concern
FUN FACT: This species is best known for its ability to hiss. The hissing sound is produced by forcing air through a pair of modified spiracles on the abdomen. Air sacks in the body work like bellows to squeeze the air out. The hiss can be heard 12 feet away, and can startle a predator so that the cockroach has time to escape.
DIET: Decomposers, feeding mostly on rotting fruits that have fallen from trees.
DESCRIPTION: The MHC is a large, wingless cockroach. Like other cockroaches, their bodies are flattened, which allows them to crawl into narrow crevices. The head is small, and is usually held underneath the thorax (which can then be mistaken for the head). Adults are dark chocolate brown with dark orange markings on the abdomen. They can reach 4 inches in length. Males have a pair of large bumps behind their heads, which they use in territorial fights. Females have much smaller bumps, or none at all.
FIND ME IN THE ZOO:
*Madagascar hissing cockroaches are education animal ambassadors, their habitat is not viewable to public as they require privacy when not on program.
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