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Pronunciation: per'i-pla-ne'ta

Definition: A genus of large cockroaches including several cosmopolitan household pests found wherever food is available, especially in moist protected areas. Periplaneta americana (American cockroach), a very large brownish-chestnut species, 30–40 mm long, is probably native to Africa but now universally distributed; Periplaneta fuliginosa (the smoky-brown cockroach) is a common household pest in the eastern and southeastern U.S.

[peri- + G. planetes, a roamer]

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© Copyright 2018 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review date: Sep 19, 2016.