The true death's head cockroach (Blaberus craniifer) is a cockroach, similar to the discoid cockroach and is a nice display animal for entomologists due to its striking appearance. Care for these animals is quite minimal and little odour is associated with them. They do give off a mild odour if significantly frightened, but the effect is generally brief. The name death's head comes from the markings on the top of the thorax. Adults of B. craniifer have wings, but do not fly, while juveniles do not have wings at all. This species also cannot climb smooth vertical surfaces, such as glass, which makes them easy to house in an open aquarium or similar.
Hybrid death's head cockroach (B. craniifer X B. fusca)
The hybrid death's head cockroach, sometimes called the brown-wing death's head, has become much more common than the true death's head for uses such as feeding tarantulas and lizards. They breed significantly faster than the true death's heads and typically get larger, sometimes over 7.5 cm (3.0 in). As juveniles, they are very hard to distinguish from the true death's head.