Can Cockroaches Live in Your Penis? Debunking A Viral Internet Meme

Eva Hagan - Author

Dec. 15 2023, Published 12:18 p.m. ET

A man stands in front of a yellow wall trying to hold back tears with is hand on his mouth.
Source: iStock

The Gist:

  • A meme on Instagram has some people wondering if cockroaches can live in penises.

  • There is no evidence that a cockroach has ever lived in, or entered a penis.

  • However, cockroaches have been known to enter other places in the body.

Article continues below advertisement

If you are ever bored, just make your way to the internet, and in a matter of time, you can be spending money, watching people cut soap, and researching the likelihood of cockroaches living in penises.

I hope I can provide some relief to those who have been wondering, or those who unfortunately stumbled across this article that no, cockroaches cannot live in your penis.

This tragic question originated from a meme that includes a fake Google search of the question: "Can cockroaches live in your penis?" with the result "Absolutely! It's totally normal, too." Let's explore the science behind this notion further so we never have to think about it again.

Article continues below advertisement
A cockroach crawls on the side of a bed with a blue and white quilt while a man sleeps in the background.
Source: iStock

Can cockroaches live in your penis?

No, cockroaches can not live in your penis. As it turns out, cockroaches prefer to do most of their terrorizing outside of our bodies. According to MEL Magazine, there is no record of anyone ever reporting an issue with cockroaches crawling up there. Insect ecologist Michael Culshaw-Maurer told MEL Magazine that it’s “just not feasible. They like damp places, but they’re generally pretty big, even at the nymphal stages, and they need food and oxygen.”

Article continues below advertisement

Another interesting factor is that cockroaches religiously self-groom, and need to clean their antennae regularly in order to survive, per a study done by NC State University.

Unfortunately, cockroaches have been known to enter other body parts, including the ears and nose. According to Merlin Environmental, the species of cockroach known as the German Cockroach is small, the world’s most invasive, and the only one ever extracted from someone’s ears or nose. However, they have never been extracted from a penis.

Article continues below advertisement

A meme started the rumor that cockroaches can live in your penis.

The creator of the meme is unknown, but the image first circulated the internet in March 2022. It’s a screenshot where it looks like someone searched: “Can cockroaches live in your penis?” with the fabricated answer: “Absolutely! It’s totally normal, too. Usually over the course of a year, 5-10 cockroaches will crawl into your penis hole while you are asleep (this is how they got the name ‘cock’ roach) and you won’t notice a thing,” per the US Sun.

Article continues below advertisement

It looks relatively real, until you actually Google this question and nothing like that answer pops up. Still it was convincing work, considering that “can cockroaches crawl in penises” became a Google Trend. They even added a bit of fake etymology, claiming that the name cockroach originates from their habit of crawling into penises, per the US Sun.

A dead cockroach lays face up on gray tiles.
Source: iStock

How did cockroaches get their name?

The actual answer to the name is far less exciting. The English word “cockroach” comes from the Spanish name for the bug “cucaracha.” It is one of the most primitive insects, found in fossils from over 320 million years ago, per Britannica.

In other words, the name has nothing to do with a male body part.

More from Green Matters

Latest Health & Wellness News and Updates

    Opt-out of personalized ads

    © Copyright 2024 Green Matters. Green Matters is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.