The Florida woods cockroach (Eurycotis floridana), or palmetto bug, is a large species of cockroach which usually grows to a length of 1½ inch to 2 inches. It is black in color and has a wide, glossy body, and appears at first glance to be wingless; however, it does have very short wings just beneath its head, which are used for flying. The cockroach, when disturbed, often emits a strong, disagreeable odor, which leads to it being referred to as the "stinking cockroach". The Florida woods roach looks remarkably similar to the female Oriental cockroach, and the two could be mistaken for each other by the casual observer.
The roach is slower moving than other species. It prefers damp locations, lots of moisture, and does well in warm, damp climates. It is found in its native habitats, such as Florida and the West Indies. The roach can wander indoors at times, especially into damp locations, such as bathrooms; however, it is found mostly outdoors and is not considered a major pest in the home. It is cold-intolerant and requires a warm, sub-tropical or tropical climate. It can often be seen in sheltered outdoor locations, such as under leaf litter, in tree holes, and under lumber and boards, and other crevices. It is often seen in bushes and wooded areas. Often it can be seen on palmetto trees, which gave it one of its early popular names, the Palmetto bug.