26 August 2010

Anamesia polyzona - Impostor Sleepy Cockroach

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Impostor Sleepy Cockroach - Anamesia polyzona

The Anamesia genus with 11 species (Australian Faunal Directory) is a member of the Blattidae family and the Polyzosteriinae subfamily, which are well represented in the Esperance district. This particular species was encountered in the Mt Buraminya mallee region (140 km or 85 miles) NE of Esperance, when I stopped for lunch under a clump of eucalypts on the edge of an open plain. These plains are created by a shallow fine sand/clay over a very hard limestone, thereby restricting root penetration and development of trees and large shrubs.

Anamesia polyzona is between 2-3 cm (1”) in head/body length and recorded as being diurnal (active during the day). And besides ducking for cover under eucalypt debris, they are also known to hide under sand and to sunbathe. The one photographed above was active at the end of August, when days are pleasantly warm and sunny, but nights chilly (around zero degrees Centigrade).

The common name of  "Impostor Sleepy Cockroach" is due to its similarity with species in the Cosmozosteria genus.

A Guide to the Cockroaches of Australia
by David Rentz  201