from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The egg case of certain insects and mollusks.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An egg case of any of the orthopteroid insects (such as cockroaches and mantids).


oo- +‎ theca (Wiktionary)


  • Other species, however, simply drop the ootheca off in some hidden corner, where the babies can incubate safely while you beat their mothers to death with a shoe.

    Boing Boing

  • Female cockroaches carry their fertilized eggs around in these pod-like sacks called ootheca.

    Boing Boing

  • Some cockroaches will tote the ootheca around attached to their bodies until the babies hatch.

    Boing Boing

  • Stumble upon enough ootheca in the basement, and its liable to be the first thing you take to the lab.

    Boing Boing

  • [12] The production of ootheca is only found in cockroaches and the praying

    CreationWiki - Recent changes [en]

  • In the species, Periplaneta Americana, the ootheca can have up to

    CreationWiki - Recent changes [en]

  • Oklahomans may be wise to learn how to find and identify a mantid egg case, called an ootheca, rather than just the adult.


  • I took some really nice images today of praying mantis nymphs emerging from their papery ootheca, an amazing sight.

    Feeds4all documents in category 'SEO'

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Captcha~tankerous.

    Will call the new tree fungus I discovered this until something better pops up.

    February 4, 2009

  • I think it would make a great dropped-a-brick-on-your-toe word: oo-theca!

    February 4, 2009

  • The sound of the word is rather lovely, I think: o-ah-THEE-kah, like the name of some Achaean princess.

    February 4, 2009

  • Nothing about this word is appealing.

    February 4, 2009

  • egg mass of a mantis

    February 3, 2009