Why Do Cockroaches Come out at Night?

It might be common knowledge that cockroaches are nocturnal. Why is this concept the general assumption? Cockroaches become inactive in the daytime and embark on an active hunt for food and other things during the night. The hunt starts within hours of everything going dark in your house.

Cockroaches emerge from their hiding spots in your house to feed on everything that they find!

Cockroaches are attracted to your house for various reasons. One reason is food! They will feed on dog food, leftovers, crumbs, sludge, and garbage, to name a few. Cockroaches may also appear during the day, by the way. However, any sighting of a cockroach during the day may indicate a severe infestation. It is also a sign of desperation from the cockroach. The food available during the night might be insufficient to satisfy the cockroach population in the house.

Why do they come out at night

Why Do Cockroaches Come out at Night? 5 Reasons.

Cockroaches are nocturnal animals, meaning they’re most active at night. This is because, during the day, they prefer to stay hidden and avoid the light.

You’ll usually see them out and about when it’s dark outside.

First, cockroaches prefer to stay hidden during the day. They’re shy creatures and don’t like being out in the open where they can be seen. You’ll usually see them out and about when it’s dark outside.

Second, cockroaches are more active at night. They move faster and are more likely to explore their surroundings when it’s dark.

And finally, cockroaches are attracted to food and water sources, which are more likely to be available at night. That’s not to say they are not available during the day, but they are more likely to be disturbed by you if they are out looking for food when you are awake!

Do not leave pet food out because cockroaches will find it easily and use it as a regular food source.

why do roaches come out at night infographic

Cockroaches are one of the hardiest animals in the world. Here are two key facts about roaches:

  • They prefer coming out at night when there is little threat to their existence.
  • They prefer warm, dark, and tight places where their bodies’ upper and lower parts touch the surface.

The most common types of roaches include American, German, Oriental, and Brown-banded.

Here are some of the reasons why cockroaches only surface during the night.

Cockroaches Feel Safe at Night

Roach’s need for survival has made them intelligent insects. They know the light is not safe for them. Therefore, they appear during the night when the lights are off, and everyone has gone to sleep.

During the day, they hide in dark places. They know that if they appear during the day or when lights are not on during the night, they are more vulnerable to attacks from predators, including humans.

Even at night, the cockroaches only appear some hours after the lights are off. Often when they appear, they are nearly always in large numbers.

Increased Opportunity at Night

When the lights are off, cockroaches appear to exploit the numerous opportunities created for them by humans. Some of these opportunities include dirty utensils in the sink, food droppings on the floor, a full garbage can, and pet food.

Often people prefer to do the dishes early in the morning. This is a huge opportunity for a roach to feed on your leftovers!

There is plenty of food for them to find during the night. In addition to these, there is minimum disturbance from predators.

 Good Environmental Conditions

During the night, the house temperature is kept warm. This warm condition makes it easy for the cockroaches to be active and search for food easily.

Environmental conditions do not pose any threat to their life. In fact, the warmer they are, the more active they are.

Minimum Competition for Food

Most creatures are inactive during the night. This means that there is little competition for food. Good news for the roaches, right?

Also, there is a lower chance of confrontation between the cockroaches and other pests during the night. Therefore, the roaches can improve their safety and bountiful hunt.

Increase Survival Rate

By avoiding predators and securing enough food during the night, the roaches can keep themselves well-nourished.

They reduce their visibility to live long in their current habitat. This way of living allows them to grow old enough to reproduce (tons of times) and keep their species prosperous.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do cockroaches crawl on you at night?

You are not going to like this question, but yes. Roches can climb on you at night. Cockroaches are excellent climbers and will have no problems getting onto your bed. If it makes you feel better, they will only climb on you if they need to get somewhere else; they are not hunting you!

Do cockroaches come out when the lights are on?

Cockroaches can come out when the light is on, but they strongly prefer not to! I stayed in a hotel in San Diego once that was infested with roaches (great pick, eh!) I saw several roaches until I hit the lights. They all disappeared very quickly.

Should I be worried if I see one cockroach?

Not immediately, no. If you see one cockroach, it may be a sign of infestation. However, it may not be. You should be checking around your home for any signs that you may have more roaches. Cockroaches breed very quickly, so it could become an infestation if you do not do anything about it.


Cockroaches are hated across the entire world. It is easy to see why too! Why do roaches come out at night? Because they have to come out at night to survive.

Cockroaches are clever and are focused on surviving. They appear during the night as a strategic survival tactic. This move allows the roaches to find food when there is minimal risk of detection and threat from predators.

By reducing their visibility, they increase their ability to exploit their current habitat long enough to reproduce.

That is why cockroaches come out at night!

Good luck!


About the author

DIY Pest Control Enthusiast Since 1996

After spending the entire night lying awake in a cockroach-infested hotel, I have driven myself to build knowledge on all things pest control. Since then, I've tested pest control techniques to see what works and what doesn't. Now, here I am giving you all the info I have learned!

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