There are about 3500 identified cockroach species around the world. That number is not exhaustive as the likely hood of other species that have not been identified yet is high. Roaches are filthy and disgusting creatures at best and the fact that they are disease carriers does not help their case. It is hard to conjure up anything that is as loathsome as a cockroach. This a consensus shared by everyone who does not want to see vermin crawling in the home. The only thing worse than a crawling roach is a flying one.
Can roaches fly?
The thought of having flying roaches in the home is absolutely terrifying. Fortunately, most species of these pests prefer a slow crawl to flight. The slow crawl of most roaches allows you a chance to grab the aerosol pesticide and give the roach a nice death spray or scramble for a slipper and give it a good whack.
Although roaches generally crawl and take their time when moving about, they can move pretty fast when they put their mind to it or when faced with danger. Surprisingly a fit and adequately scared roach can move at an astonishing speed of 59 inches per second. If it has a head start on you, chances are it will beat you to the nearest crevice and make a clean get away.
Roach species that have a decent flying ability include the Cuban, Asian, Smoky brown and Australian roaches.
The American Roach is often mistaken for a flying Roach. But in fact it is just a good glider that mastered the art of using its wings to glide from an elevated position to a lower one.
The truth is, it’s quite hard to define roaches as true fliers. Not so much because the some species are not capable but roaches prefer to use their capable legs and crawl from one point to another.
Roaches make a delicious snack and are prey to other animals higher in the food chain such as birds and bats. When cockroaches take flight, they become vulnerable game for birds. The roach body size is also hefty for an insect and has very little maneuverability when in flight to avoid prey. So it seems that even roaches with flying ability would rather hug the earth in a crawl than take to the air and risk becoming a midday snack for the closest bird.
Although the sight of a roach in flight in your home can be a lot to take in, the good news is that they can he exterminated just as non-flying roaches can. Where roaches are concerned, extermination is often not as straight forward as one would like to think. In case of an infestation, it’s best to call a professional pest controller to assess the situation and formulate an effective plan to bring down the whole colony of both flying and non-flying roaches in your home.
The sight of a full grown roach is not only disgusting, but literally makes your skin crawl. To make matters worse some species have the ability to take flight. It is completely understandable for anyone to want to get rid of roaches in their kitchen and other areas of the house.
There are about 3500 species of roaches but the most common ones that frequent our homes are the German and American roach. It is quite shocking to think that in the United States alone, there are more than 50 roach species.
Killing and exterminating roaches for the long haul a near impossible task. To get anywhere near that standard, you will require the right sort of roach killing products that can exterminate the problem while taking human safety into account.
What is the best roach killer?
No one standalone product can successfully exterminate roaches. That is because they reproduce at a rapid pace and their lairs are well hidden and out your reach. For that reason a four prong approach is your best bet of annihilating a colony. That means using several targeted roach killing products to achieve that end. The four prong plans includes the following:
1. Roach traps
This will attract roaches and trap them. Their purpose is not to eliminate the roaches but instead to help you identify the general area they seem to be coming from.
2. Roach bait
Roach bait is treated to attract roaches in the home to eat and take a bite of from it. The ones that do will die eventually and will also transfer some of the killer residue back to their liar and help kill a good portion of the colony.
3 Roach sprays
Residual sprays should be sprayed near the roach baits as they will deter the roaches from making their way to the bait. A sprayed roach will also transport the roach killer residue back to the lair and help distribute the poison in the lair killing off even more roaches.
This can be considered as birth control for roaches as it makes them impotent. The fact they lose their ability to reproduce while still being killed by the other products ensures that their populations in the home will dwindle visibly and eventually disappear for a time.
This four prong approached can be considered to be the best and most effective way of exterminating roaches in the home. The frustration of whacking cockroaches right left and center and killing some with a powerful pesticide is only a palliative measure.
If you want to enjoy and maintain a roach free home, proper hygiene in roach sensitive areas such as the kitchen is imperative. This means emptying and cleaning the trash at night before bed. Ensure that the kitchen counter tops and sinks are clean and free of any leftover food. Top notch hygiene and the four prong approach guarantees that the cockroach nuisance is dealth with.
The palmetto bug usually refers to cockroaches that live both indoors and outdoors. It is also known as the Florida woods cockroach and it can grow to between 12 and 16 inches. When threatened the palmetto bug will emit a spray of foul smelling liquid squirting it up to 1 meter away. This stinky substance has earned it the name skunk roach, stinking cockroach and stinkroach.
This roach moves slower than other roaches and is typically found in damp environments or areas with lots of moisture and warmth. Although it loves the outdoors it can wander indoors and feel quite at home in a damp corner of the house. The Palmetto bug is commonly confused with the American cockroach but this bug has distinct features that make it stand out.
To begin with it has no hind wings and the fore wings are extremely short. This is distinctly different from any other cockroach species. They can be reddish brown right after mottling but their typical color is a deep black brown.
How to get rid of Palmetto bugs
Getting rid of palmetto bugs permanently is possible and advisable because these large roaches can easily become a terror inside your household.
Encourage natural elimination
Natural elimination of these bugs can occur when you encourage the presence of harmless animals like geckos. Large geckos nab cockroaches and eat them. You can also get a cat which will find killing the bugs a form of entertainment and they even gobble up a few along the way.
Seal crack and crevices in the house
Palmetto bugs are big in size but they can still disappear pretty fast into a crevice in the wall or ground. Sealing these of gives them no way to enter the house in the first place. Also check the electrical outlets for any entry points.
Make poisonous roach baits
Roaches enter the house to feed so creating bait for them laced with boric acid will be effective in getting rid of them. Boric acid is cheap so you can use it efficiently for long term containment of the bugs without spending too much.
The great thing with boric acid is that it can kill the bugs by consumption and by touch. When ingested the acid will disrupt the cockroach’s digestive system and the nervous system. In case the boric acid scratches the roach’s exoskeleton it will cause the bug to dry out. Losing their internal fluid balance will cause the roach to die. Boric acid is toxic so it shouldn’t be used in a household with kids or pets.
Use diatomaceous earth
Diatomaceous earth works in the same way as boric acid, drying out the insect and killing it when consumed. It is also naturally abrasive so insects will feel like they are walking on glass shards. Diatomaceous earth comes in two options: food grade and pool grade. Food grade is safe to use in the home but pool grade diatomaceous earth is extremely toxic and can cause health problems for the user.
Infestation with any pest, especially a stubborn one like the German cockroach, is not only annoying to the residents, but also a repelling factor to any potential buyer. Such a problem dramatically reduces the property price.
To get rid of cockroaches for good there are a few things that should be done in the given order. These steps have been tested and are known to work in some given cases.
The first step in getting rid of cockroaches is to get the whole property treated for pests, both by applying the chemical sprays and the local gel.
To prepare for such treatment the whole house should be cleaned thoroughly.
And, by thoroughly it’s meant to clean every square inch from anything that could be considered as food by the cockroaches. Even if you don’t see it, just clean it.
After the treatments have been applied to the given intervals by the professionals comes your role. There are two things that the property owner or the resident should do:
1. Find all the cracks in the house and seal them.
A silicon or cement applicator can be used. Those cracks are the hiding places of the cockroaches, especially if you can spot the tiny brown dots scattered around and on the surfaces underneath the crack. These little tiny brown dots are the fecal materials of the cockroaches. And by sealing them you make sure any eggs when they hatch nothing can come out to bother you again.
2. Make sure you don’t invite them every again to your property.
This part is crucial and is the reason such infestation with German cockroaches are really hard to treat. If you have roaches in your property it means they have a way to get to it.
For example, if your neighbors apply pest control treatment, especially the chemical spray one, some of the adult roaches from their property could migrate to your house. Make sure they don’t find anything to keep them alive.
An example list of things not to do to keep the cockroaches away is as follows:
- By sealing the cracks above you give them no place that they can use as a nest.
- By cleaning before the professionals treat your property, you make sure if an egg pouch escapes the treatment and hatches, the baby roaches will have nothing to feed on.
- By regularly keeping the property clean all the time and crack-free you are making sure no migrating adults could find a place to nest or any nutrients.
- By fixing any dripping faucets or pipes you are making sure your property stays dry.
Cockroaches need moisture just as much as they need food. If moisture is not there, they can not survive.
There are some electronic devices that repel cockroaches by producing ultrasonic waves that can not be heard by humans nor the pets but are annoying to the roaches. Always have one of those on.
To fully eliminate cockroaches in your home, contact your local pest control company for cockroach removal services.
Getting rid of the cockroaches can sometimes be an extremely difficult and long-lasting job. Because of that, it is much better to prevent them by completely destroying cockroach eggs in the house than to struggle with detecting and removing them.
These insects have incredible survival skills and adapt to the changing environment.
How do you know if you have a cockroach infestation?
Cockroach marks:These are liquid excreta produced by cockroaches when water is readily available. The marks are usually brown, irregular in shape, often in the form of streaks and usually much larger than the circular marks left by the house fly.
Fecal pellets: These are produced when the is less water available (instead of liquid excreta) and usually found by wall-floor junctions where cockroaches tend to move along. The pellets are less than 2mm long and are usually brown or black.
Egg cases (oothecae): The empty egg cases of the German cockroach are often hidden in harbourages, unhatched oothecae are rarely found as they are carried by the female until just before they hatch.
Live insects: Live or recently dead adults or nymphs trapped on insect detectors may help provide clues to the extent of the infestation.
The reason why people exterminate them is that they are carriers of some unpleasant diseases like for instance salmonella or dysentery which both can be very harmful.
Many asthmatic people also have problems with the presence of cockroaches because their discarded skin gets airborne and can cause allergic and asthmatic reactions. People have been fighting these disease carriers for centuries.
However, they breed really fast and can cause serious infestation just in a week.
Hopefully, there are some methods of how to prevent them from entering our houses.
Throughout the years, people have developed some common cockroach control techniques that help them prevent infestation.
The best way to do that is to remove all the food particles that are available and that can become the target of cockroaches. It is also important not to leave food and drink scarps inside the house since cockroaches always look for water sources.
Keeping food in sealed containers is a good way to prevent cockroaches from coming, and if they eventually enter the house food will be protected.
This is a well-known fact that cockroaches love warm places and water. In order to prevent them from coming into our homes, it is important to take care that there are no water leaks.
Another thing that is very important to fight cockroaches is to make sure there are no cracks in the walls in the house, especially in the kitchen and the bathroom.
They find these cracks really fast and fix them so not providing them places, where they can stay, will prevent them from coming.
These common cockroach control techniques are enough to prevent cockroaches from coming in most of the cases if they do not help it is time to call a professional.
Roaches like humidity and warmth. They can survive just about anything, but cold weather makes a significant reduction in their reproduction. In addition, like humans, roaches prefer to be out and active in warmer weather.
Reproduction is based on the life cycle and it is very sensitive to small temperature changes.
For example, if the temperature drops five degrees, the roach reproduction life cycle is cut in about half. If you take it down another five degrees, you cut the cycle down by another half.
So, in other words, for a ten-degree drop in coolness roach reproduction will decrease by 3/4.
Evidence of temperature on roach reproduction is the relatively higher number of roaches in hotter and more humid states than colder states. States with harsh winters have the least number or cockroaches.
One thing that roaches do is come indoors for the winter. They like a hot spot under a water heater, a stove, or the pantry. Areas with a lot of outdoor roaches will simply come into the home for the winter.
Boric acid dust in concrete cracks can help keep them from walking into your home and reproducing successfully.
Getting Rid Of Roaches: Identify Their Area
If you plan on getting rid of these cockroaches, you would need to first identify where are the areas that they normally hang out.
Roaches like dark, damp and moist places. Particularly if there is an abundant source of food nearby for them to rummage through at night.
Most of the time, you can find them coming out at night in your kitchen or bathroom areas. Places where we normally throw out our leftover food like trash cans or near drains are their ideal hangout spot.
Use Roach Traps
Now instead of trapping them, you’ll want to exterminate them. This is where you use cockroach bait which you can easily buy from any pest control store.
One thing about using roach traps or bait is that they are fairly easy to use. You do not need to do any substance mixing or preparation.
The insecticide is located in a small child-resistant plastic container. There is no need to empty out any food cabinets or cover any food preparation. All you need to do is get around 10 or 12 of these roach traps to place strategically in those areas where the roaches have been spotted.
Nooks And Corners
Just slip them underneath your refrigerator, stove, kitchen cabinets, dishwasher, and storage places. Remember now, you need to place them in all the nooks and corners where cockroaches will travel along.
Do not spray any insecticide on these roach traps or around them as these will deter the roaches from coming near.. The idea is that the roaches come out and eat the cockroach bait or bring them back to their nest where they will slowly die.
Don’t worry as the insecticide is not exposed to people or pets. You should be able to see a significant change in the roach population within 1 to 3 weeks.
About 30 species of cockroach are often associated with human habitats, with many households in the US (and all over the world) often suffering from a cockroach infestation from time to time.
Cockroaches can spread diseases, are able to feed on a great number of things, hide away in the smallest of cracks (even down your drains and pipes), and can be very hard to eliminate overall.
So of course any homeowner would want to get rid of them. Maybe before trying out insecticides and other stronger chemicals, or before reaching out to a professional pest control company, you want to try getting rid of them using more natural means.
Note that repellents really only mean you keep cockroaches away and not actually kill them. So these cockroaches will continue to reproduce, and will come back once a repellent’s faded off.
The following would be some of the most popular home remedies you may want to try out to not only repel cockroaches, but to kill them as well. While there are many such repellents found online, below would be the most effective ones you can try out.
Mix 3 parts fabric softener and 2 parts water. Put it in a spray, and directly spray on a cockroach. This works by blocking pores on their body, causing them to suffocate.
SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER:
- This method only works to kill cockroaches directly sprayed, and they won’t die right away
- This only affects the cockroaches you catch and directly spray, and doesn’t do anything for the other cockroaches that are most likely inhabiting your home, nesting in areas you can’t reach
- It is a poison, and long-term exposure may cause you to be ill
- Never sprinkle where it can come into contact with your food or water (or your pet’s food and water)
- Some diatomaceous earth is also food-grade, making it a little safer for you and your pets to be exposed to it
- When handling diatomaceous earth, be sure to wear a mask and do not inhale it – these same microscopic shards are also abrasive to our lungs
- Avoid using diatomaceous earth near where people and pets typically stay – again, it’s an abrasive material to our lungs as well as our pet’s lungs, so we do not want to be inhaling it
- Place baits near areas you think they’re nesting
- Place baits in cockroach high-traffic areas. Placing them out in the open will make it harder for the roaches to locate it
- Avoid spraying insecticide where the bait is. If the insecticide you spray contaminates the food, roaches won’t eat it and will avoid the area
Because of the method of application, the time it takes to kill the roach, and its ineffectiveness for a cockroach infestation, you would be better off trying out some of the other cockroach killers listed below.
One of the most popular bug killers that is effective on cockroaches and a number of other pests. Lightly sprinkle in cockroach high-traffic areas. Once it comes into contact with a cockroach (or other bug), it will attach to its body. Then when it grooms, it will ingest the poison and cause its death.
SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER:
You can buy boric acid in stores or online.
Diatomaceous earth has certainly become a rock star in DIY pest control circles.
It’s a naturally-occurring material that has microscopic shards, and these shards cut away at the insect’s waxy outer layer allowing moisture to escape its body and for it to eventually die of desiccation. It’s used as a natural pest control for a great many number of bugs.
It is a fine powder that feels soft to our hands, and you can lightly sprinkle where you think cockroach high-traffic areas are.
SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER:
When buying diatomaceous earth, be sure to read the package label, as some diatomaceous earth you can buy would be more effective than others against pests which its labeling should indicate.
COCKROACH BAIT TRAP
Another effective method would be using cockroach bait – this is essentially poisoned food with delayed toxicant activity. Roaches will consume this food and later on die from it.
Since cockroaches are cannibalistic, other roaches in the area will eat the poisoned dead cockroach and also die from it. They may expel feces containing residual insecticide. Since roaches also eat feces, they may be poisoned from eating feces with residual insecticide as well.
SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER:
If any of the methods above don’t work for you or if you have a sever cockroach infestation, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a professional pest control company for assistance.
Check out our other blog entries on cockroaches (and for ideas on how to keep them away) here!
Cockroaches come into your house primarily because of two things: food and water. Most species of cockroach prefer the great outdoors to call their home, but other roaches, particularly the American cockroach, prefer the sanctity of your home where they’ll find shelter from the sun (and the elements), and most definitely food and water. Finding a regular supply of food and water is definitely high on their list.
They can come through your pipes and drains, windows, doors, the gaps and cracks on your walls, vents, and a number of other places you won’t even think to look. Once they establish that yes, your home is a nice, cozy place, you best believe they’ll set up shop there. They may call the rest of their family and friends in, or give birth to a whole brood of fresh roaches right under your nose.
What are these sources of food? Well, roaches can eat almost anything. They get most of their nutrients from the bacteria living on their bodies, so they’re not exactly concerned with how healthy their food is – they’ve been known to eat the most unexpected things like toothpaste and even glue (like the glue on the back of stamps). They can eat dead skin flakes, eyelashes, fingernails – they prefer dead things because their jaws are actually quite weak.
If they have their pick, of course, it’ll be a wide array of choices from your garbage bin. So if you want to make your place inhospitable from roaches, keep your garbage properly contained and disposed of in a timely manner. Don’t leave dishes on the sink overnight either, because they will love to clean off those plates if you give them the opportunity.
Roaches are nocturnal creatures, and during daytime, they prefer to find dark, damp places to settle in. Get rid of possible hiding places in your house such as old storage boxes, which are also great places for roaches to lay their eggs in. Fix leaky faucets and make sure you don’t have standing water where you don’t want it (which can also serve as a breeding ground for mosquitoes). You may also want to wrap insulation on pipes that condense, as that can also serve as a regular source of water for roaches – remember, they can live for a month without food, but only for a week without water.
Seal or caulk gaps and cracks on your walls, especially if you have any gaps between the wall and any piping. Invest in screens for your windows and any outside vents, and use weatherstripping on windows and doors.
Also remember that cockroaches are a great source of food for a number of other pests like spiders and cockroaches, so if you have them, there’s a good chance these other pests will want to set up shop in your home too.
If you’ve tried to get rid of cockroaches on your own but still find them in your house after a day or two, then it may be time to call a professional pest exterminator like Watchdog Pest Control for a guaranteed pest-free home.
Roaches are one of the more common pests that plague the average household. One minute you’re totally relaxed, watching television — and the next, you’re screaming for your life running out of the room while the little creature of terror flies maniacally behind you.
But where did it come from? Well, there are many ways a roach could have entered your dwelling space. You could have unknowingly brought one in that hitched a ride in your grocery bag,or they were hiding out in a cardboard box that was delivered to your door. More likely is that they were just outside and shimmied through the gaps on your doors and windows (they can squeeze through spaces as little as one-sixteenth of an inch). They can even come through your pipes (they can hold their breath for 40 minutes).
Like many pests, they like places that are warm, have moisture, are dark, and have readily available food sources – all of which your home offers.
There’s a stigma that roaches are only found in dirty homes, however this is not true. Roaches don’t discriminate when it comes to setting up house, but they do enjoy places where there is more food available – that means, trash not properly disposed, dishes left in the sink, food items not properly stored – these all contribute to roaches staying longer, and the longer they stay means the more babies they’ll give birth to in the sanctuary that is your house.
That said, even clean houses can have a roaches living in it. Roaches need very little to survive. They can survive a month without food, and a week without water, and are happy enough with the warmth that your house provides.
If your house or apartment isn’t newly built, then chances are they’ve always been there. They’re very nocturnal creatures, so unless you’re regularly awake during the night, you might not even know they’re there.
Once inside your home, they’re hard to find unless they come out from wherever it is they’re hiding. They will hide inside walls and under sinks, especially in a room that isn’t often used. They like basements and attics, and have no problem traveling from one room to the next to get to their food.
To help safeguard against roaches living with you, make sure you always check your grocery bags every time you bring one home. If you have something delivered, check the box – it’s not that uncommon to find small roaches have taken up space in there. And since empty boxes are a favorite breeding ground for cockroaches, make sure you properly dispose of them right away.
Caulk or seal gaps along your walls and doors, especially cracks between walls and pipes. You may also want to use drain covers for sinks that are pest-proof, that is, with holes small enough that roaches won’t be able to squeeze through, and invest in nets or mesh for windows and outside vents.
Properly disposing trash, regularly washing your dishes, and properly storing your food also go a long way to make your house more inhospitable for roaches.
And if you have more roaches than you care to deal with, having a professional come take a look is just a phone call away.
There are around 4,600 species of cockroaches, but thankfully only about 30 species are associated with human habitats. In Arizona, there are only about 20 species. These cockroaches are often referred to as sewer roaches or even water bugs, though the latter is because some cockroaches, like the Oriental cockroach in particular, are often mistaken for the Giant Water Bug due to how similar they look.
Now we all know how hardy cockroaches are. It’s often said that they can even survive a city devastated by a nuclear explosion – they can withstand exposure to extreme radiation to a certain extent, according to MythBusters.
But another not-so-fun fact about cockroaches is that they can survive underwater for quite some time. Fully submerged, they can “hold their breath” for about 40 minutes. This is because roaches don’t breathe through their mouths and they don’t have noses. What they have are called spiracles, which are holes in their sides. They can close these holes and stay fully submerged in water for about 40 minutes. It’s this same ability that lets them crawl through our house’s or apartment’s pipes and drains – a way of moving inside and outside dwelling spaces commonly attributed to American cockroaches.
A cockroach can survive without food for up to a month – this is because it actually gets most of its nutrients from the bacteria living on its body, and it can survive without water for about a week. If a cockroach loses its head for some reason, it can survive for quite some time before it dies of thirst. If you think about it, sewers are not only great highways for cockroaches, but also great places for them to live in. It’s dark, they can feed on accumulated gunk, and they have a source of water.
Drain cleaning, drain treatments, and drain traps go a long way to eliminating not only roaches but a number of other insects that spread disease and bacteria, and having clean pipes mean eliminating conditions where these insects may thrive. Also be sure to use a proper drain cover where roaches can’t easily slip through (and they can slip through extremely small spaces including openings 1/16 of an inch).
When cleaning these pipes and drains, make sure to wear gloves and a safety mask as the cleaning process may aerosolize pathogenic bacteria. Some pesticides can be used on drains, but make sure to read labels carefully before use.
Make sure your drain pipes are properly sealed. If you find any cracks or holes, seal them with appropriate caulk. That includes gaps or spaces between pipes and walls where cockroaches may come through. Fix leaky faucets and dripping pipes, and wrap insulation foam around pipes that produce condensation. Standing water attracts roaches, and removing possible sources of hydration for them will make them want to look for a more habitable dwelling.
They may also come through doors and windows, so invest in weatherstripping to secure gaps and be sure to use mesh on outside vents.