views updated

Blaberidae (class Insecta, order Blattodea) Family of medium to large, broad-bodied cockroaches, most of which have short, stout legs, and relatively short antennae. Some species burrow in the ground, or live in rotting wood. Leucophaea maderae (Madeira cockroach) is able to stridulate, and produces an offensive odour when disturbed. Gromphadorhina species can produce sound by forcing air through the spiracles. This mainly tropical group includes the largest cockroaches known.