Therea petiveriana, variously called the "desert cockroach", "seven-spotted cockroach" or "Indian domino cockroach", is a species ofcrepuscular cockroach found in southern India. They are members of a basal group within the cockroaches. This somewhat roundish and contrastingly marked cockroach is mainly found on the ground in scrub forest habitats where they may burrow under leaf-litter or loose ground during the heat of the day.The cockroach is similar to a black ladybug with white spots.


The black and white pattern of adults is believed to have evolved to mimic the pattern of the aggressive ground beetle Anthia sexguttata that has strong defenses, including the ability to spray chemical irritants.The upperside of the abdomen is orange-yellow, but is hidden by the tegmina. The spots on the asymmetrical tegmina are placed so that when closed the spots appear symmetrical. The right tegmen has a lobe that is bright orange-yellow. The species has been said to be one of the few cockroaches with "grace and beauty".The head is bent back underneath the pronotal shield (hypognathous) and the ocelli(simple eyes) face forward, helping sense light and thereby time foraging activity during early morning and late evening.

Therea petiveriana

The cockroach.From Thiruvannamalai, South India.