Insect spotted in Johannesburg, South Africa

There is a bush in my garden that I love to observe, as it often has large rain spiders building nests in its leaves, but I occasionally notice large groups of an orange-headed insect on the leaves, and I can only assume that they are the primary prey item of the spiders, but I can't seem to identify them, and I only managed to get a picture of one this morning, as they usually run and hide if I get close enough for a picture.

It has a very similar morphology to a cockroach, in my opinion, but after looking over common species in the area, I still have no matches, it is around 2 - 2.5 cm. I have never seen them anywhere but this bush. I live in Johannesburg, South Africa.

I would really appreciate any help in identifying the species.

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    $\begingroup$ please add your location and approximate size of the specimen. Thanks $\endgroup$ – theforestecologist Mar 2 '18 at 3:15
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    $\begingroup$ @theforestecologist Thanks for the feedback, I have added the requested information. $\endgroup$ – Lord Thanatos Mar 2 '18 at 6:11
  • $\begingroup$ They usually come out during a large rain to prevent drowning $\endgroup$ – Gabriel Fair Aug 17 '19 at 23:42

It looks like two insects there, with the one in the background (top) impossible to see. But the one in the front, with its head down looks very much like the American cockroach, Periplaneta americana (Blattodea, Blattidae)

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the answer, I have considered that, but it looks too dark in my opinion? Although I suppose it could be their diet or some other factor... $\endgroup$ – Lord Thanatos Mar 2 '18 at 6:13
  • $\begingroup$ The exoskeletal plates on the legs don't really match that cockroach. But yes, looks like something related to that... $\endgroup$ – Armatus Oct 28 '18 at 11:28
  • $\begingroup$ The darkness of the American cockroach is affected by its habitat and when it last molted. For example American cockroach found in the forest grasses is usually solid black, where as the pictures you find online are of indoor cockroaches which are more light brown. You can have variations of darkness when they interbreed. The cockroach in this image is hands down an American variety. $\endgroup$ – Gabriel Fair Aug 17 '19 at 23:30

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