Sometimes I see in my house there are flipped cockroaches whose lose their heads. I used to have a cat, but there is no pet in my house anymore so I think it's only ants can be involved in this. But if so, the headless cockroach should be preyed already. Is there any explanation for this?


1 Answer 1


In all likelihood, it is your cat who crunches the cockroach's head once it catches it and/or finishes playing with it.

Ants do eat bugs but they are usually not so selective that they'll carry off the head alone. With more manageable insects, they carry the whole thing off; otherwise they take it apart and carry it away in pieces if they're interested in it as a food source.

If you watch a cat with a mouse, chipmunk, bird, large insect, etc, they often seek to kill the animal with a throat or nape bite if they are done 'playing' with it. I've found headless prayer mantises and other large insects in my garage many times, and have seen my cats beheading them.

The techniques that cats use to kill prey vary with prey size

  • $\begingroup$ I found a clip in YouTube showing a cat eats a chipmunk's head. Does it swallow the cockroaches' heads or just beheading them? Why they bother to kill them when they don't even eat them? $\endgroup$
    – Ooker
    Commented Nov 25, 2014 at 5:42
  • $\begingroup$ Sometimes they eat the insect's head, sometimes they don't. They have instincts that are unrelated to hunger. For example, dogs love to chase moving objects. That's great when it's a frisbee, but not so great when it's a child. Cats have this instinct as well. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 25, 2014 at 5:59
  • $\begingroup$ Today I found a headless cockroach in my house again, even though my cat has gone. Do you have any explanation for this? $\endgroup$
    – Ooker
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 12:45
  • $\begingroup$ @Ooker - Nope. none. What do other cockroaches eat? $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 12:48
  • $\begingroup$ I don't know. Maybe food trash? $\endgroup$
    – Ooker
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 12:51

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .