Can cockroaches fly? The answer is yes. Pests are unwelcome into our homes and cockroaches more so. When they take to the air the grossness factor is just unbearable.
Cockroaches are one of the most ubiquitous insects globally and are considered to be among the elite in their ability to survive. They are extremely adaptable and resilient.
While we may have seen a species of two or roaches in or homes, it mind boggling to realize that there are over three thousand documented species of cockroaches. Majority of these are found in tropical regions. More than seventy cockroach species inhabit North America.
Cockroach Species that fly
The male Pennsylvania wood cockroach is known for taking to the air. They are approximately an inch long. They have light wings and like being out in the daytime.
The Brown banded cockroach is capable of making short flights. The American cockroach is an adept flier. They have red-brown color and are prevalent in the United States. They have long narrow bodies and wings which explains why they are better suited for more sustainable flight.
The Cuban cockroach flies for short distances. They are green in color and have a very thin body.
Asian cockroaches are impressive fliers. They like being out in the light and thankfully are often found inside homes unlike most of their other counterparts.
The Megaloblatta is endowed with the largest body amongst flying cockroaches with an impressive 7 inch wingspan and a long body topping up at 4 inches. It inhabits South and Central America mostly.
Australian Cockroaches are native to Australia and enjoy humid and hot parts of the country. They are about an inch long in length and fairly strong flyers.
Cockroaches do not fly much because their musculature is not strong enough to allow long distance flight. In comparison to their wing size most cockroaches have a big body mass meaning flight does not come easy to them. They find it hard to maneuver once they take to the air. That explains why even the best roach flyer can only manage a short distance. In fact, most roaches glide as opposed to try flight. Roaches are more efficient on the ground using their legs. They are faster that way and can outrun most insects. It is also safer in the ground. A flying cockroach is fair game for birds.
Why cockroaches fly
Cockroaches will fly if they feel they are under threat to make a quick getaway. They will also find it easier to fly if they in higher elevation moving to a lower point. In most cases, this is often not true flight but more of a glide. Cockroaches also fly when attracted to food, in search of water or areas with a cooler temperature.
Cockroaches are cold blooded like all insects and which means they more apt to take flight when the temperatures are higher. The optimal temperature for cockroaches is 75 degrees to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Beyond 85 degrees Fahrenheit cockroaches start flying around out of necessity and higher energy levels looking for cooler places to inhabit.
Roaches are hideous enough even without flying capabilities. So if you have an infestation, get in touch with your local pests controller to exterminate them.
I can’t think of anything worse than turning on the lights in the kitchen and seeing swarms of cockroaches scuttling all over the floor, cabinets and countertops. They make my skin crawl and I’m certainly not the only one who feels this way. Apart from contaminating your food they also spread dangerous bacteria on surfaces they touch so you cannot afford to take an infestation lightly.
In terms of size, most cockroaches range from one to three inches in length. In North America, the American and German cockroaches are the most common.
Because of the resilient nature and breeding prowess of this creature, getting rid of cockroaches will need a multi pronged approach.
Eliminate hiding places.
They love cardboard boxes and piles of paper. They find these very cozy so getting rid of these and other clutter will discourage cockroaches from staying around.
Make a potent and cheap bait that cockroaches are unable to resist. Mix a couple of spoons of boric acid with same amount of powdered sugar. Then put it on a piece of paper and place it where there’s a lot of cockroach traffic. Place several of this around the roach high traffic areas. This will help decimate their numbers in a big way.
Cut off the food supply.
These pests can live on almost anything left lying around, like crumbs, unopened boxed food and dirty dishes.
Clean out cabinets and wipe them to get rid of any spilled and broken bits of food. Check behind the cabinets also. Don’t leave any unclean dishes in the sink or counter, especially at night time when going to bed.
Cockroaches can’t survive without water for more than a few days but the can go for a long time without food. So repair all the leaks and mop up any pooled water.
Checking behind your fridge regularly is a good idea. That is because the refrigerators emit heat creating a cozy warm environment for roaches to flourish. This area is also ideal for roaches because it largely undisturbed.
Getting a bin with a tight fitting lid for your garbage is a helpful measure. Make to clean the bin including the bottom to remove bit and pieces of food. Air and sun-dry the bin frequently.
Spraying pesticides in large areas of your home could contaminate areas you don’t want contaminated like countertops and appliances. Baits would be a better way to go about it. They are cleaner, very easy to apply and their effectiveness will last longer. When the cockroaches eat the bait they go back to their hideouts and die and they are then eaten by other cockroaches passing on the poison.
Cockroaches will hitch a ride in the things you bring to your home without you realizing it. Old furniture will most likely habor a few cockroaches, so do a thorough inspection before installation. The other culprits are deliveries and groceries.
Cockroaches are built to fit into very small holes and tiny cracks. If light is visible under your door, cockroaches can get in. Prevent any potential invasion by sealing any entry points like gaps between walls using clear caulk. You can use door guards to seal the space between the outdoor and the interior.
If cockroach numbers do not reduce even with these measures consider calling a pest management professional to help you with the problem before it becomes unbearable.
It is rather a mystery how a tiny, little insect such as a household cockroach can possibly affect the lifestyle and well-being of humans in such a significant way.
As cockroaches love to live in communities and are constantly multiplying, it would be safe to say that a roach-infested home could very well be housing thousands, if not tens of thousands of these pesky little creatures.
The quickest and most immediate solution to a cockroach problem is to use pesticides. It is undeniably one of the most effective ways to eradicate a cockroach colony, although it has been known that this method has failed at times due to cockroaches that are pesticide-resistant.
However, the use of chemically-filled pesticides has its downfalls and long-term effects as the chemicals are harmful to the environment and human health. We may be effectively killing off cockroaches with pesticides.
But, in the long run, it also is contributing towards the deterioration in the ecosystem and the health of our loved ones.
Try pronouncing the names of the chemical ingredients found in pesticides such as fipronil, hydramethylnon, indoxacarb or imidacloprid and one would quickly realize that in order to kill off cockroaches, some rather strong chemicals are being used to produce such results.
Pesticides, if not used with caution and handled with care, could bring serious damage to the ecosystem especially if water sources and landscapes are contaminated by the chemicals.
It is important that pesticides are used with caution in places where livestock and plantations are located. Besides that, these poisonous chemicals could have such a damaging impact on aquatic life if contamination occurs in lakes, creeks, drains and other natural waterways.
We have all heard about how toxic chemicals can affect human health and even worse, sometimes even leave a life-threatening impact. Studies have shown that the use of pesticide sprays in public housing areas are directly related to the respiratory illness that residents in those areas suffer from.
According to research is done, pesticides have been found to cause damage to the immune system of millions of Americans – an unbelievably staggering statistic.
To make matters worse, the toxic chemicals that we are exposed to put us at risk of developing life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, leukemia and birth defects, to name a few.
With the growing awareness for protecting our environment and promoting good health, there have been many initiatives in finding natural and healthier alternative methods of implementing pest management.
People are becoming more concerned about repelling pests and maintaining a healthy and sanitized lifestyle, in order to avoid having to resort to pesticides.
There are various methods that have become popular in households such as sanitation procedures, exclusion techniques and physical barriers on furniture.
Pesticides do not merely have health dangers to it. It also adds up monetarily. Dangers from pesticides affect long term health care costs, adding to the already bulging pesticide costs.
Repelling cockroaches safely and effectively significantly lowers the cost to the point of neglect.
German cockroach facts: These little pests have been named one of the toughest to kill due to their thick exoskeleton, ability grow severed limbs, nest in tight spaces and extremely rapid reproduction rate.
In fact, German cockroaches can actually double the size of their family in one week’s time. Chances are if you turn on the kitchen light in the middle of the night only to have critters crawling on your feet then you might be dealing with German cockroaches, as most cockroaches prefer to fly when in peril.
Do You Have Houseguests?
Apart from being quick on their feet instead of using wings, you might want to check out a few other characteristics before you jump to conclusions.
German Cockroaches tend to be a bit darker in color than other roaches until they reach maturity and feature a yellow spot on their backs. They also leave behind darker feces and their egg capsules tend to be a darker tan coloring.
You will really know you’ve been invaded when you start to smell foul unexplainable odors in various areas of the home.
Why Are Cockroaches Dangerous?
If you’ve noticed you or your children are having more asthma attacks lately, or if it seems as if there are a lot more allergens in the home then you might have cockroaches.
Cockroaches have been documented as a popular cause of allergy since the 1950s and have been a known problem for children with asthma.
Cockroaches leave behind saliva, bacteria, feces, and carcasses that cause people to have allergic reactions. These items are often picked up in the dust and air, so they spread throughout the home much faster.
Many people will even find that cockroaches cause skin irritation, which can cause as much irritation as poison oak.
The worst thing about cockroaches is they will live in almost any environment, no matter how hot or cold, so there is really no way to prevent them from entering your home.
In fact, statistics show that 78-98% of urban homes have roaches and most have up to 900 to 330,000 of these invasive pests.
So, if you have allergies, you might want to take care of the problem before it escalates beyond control.
If you don’t want to take the risk of traditional poisons like roach sprays then you might want to try a proven granule based formula.
Granule-based roach killers are the ‘new age’ methods, the most effective and safest way to get rid of cockroaches from your home or office.
Granule-based formulas do not kill cockroaches instantly; instead, they allow cockroaches to live long enough to be able to share and spread the bait amongst the roach infestation.
After 3-5 days the infected roaches will retreat back to the cockroach nest and die. When a new generation is born they will be feeding on the infected dead cockroaches in the nest causing the new generation to die also.
In effect, this is the only way to ‘kill cockroaches by the colony’.
To get the best and safest cockroach removal, call in your local pest control company.
So if you have found more than one type of cockroaches scurrying around your house then it is quite likely that a whole load more are hiding away between floorboard or in the walls.
However don’t despair, they are only insects after all and not as clever as humans. There are a few other species that are similar but are found in the home a little less often.
Identifying these roaches is pretty easy and can aid in extermination techniques:
Growing up to 25mm in length, with a reddish-brown color and single stripe on the head these big punks love the taste of liquor and can often be found in drinking establishments or under your sofa if you fell asleep with a beer in your hand again! They can live for around 1 and a half years and have an incubation period of 6 to 8 weeks.
Identifying your bug could be the first step in eradication and control.
Sporting a nice tan/brownish color and two lighter stripes on the back of its head, this little insect can grow up to around 15mm in length and is probably the fastest breeding of the home pests. The incubation period is about 30 days and around 30-40 nymphs can be born. Living for around 6 months one roach can become 30,000 in just a year.
A bit bigger than the other roaches the sluggish Oriental Roach grows to around 25mm in length, which is pretty big. They move more slowly than expected and are a dark brown/black color with a shiny body.
Living in dark damp areas and sometimes known as a ‘waterbug’, they are most likely to be found in cellars or damp mulch. Incubation can last 2 months with about 15 eggs hatching and they can each live for up to 2 years. Generally slower than their German cousins, but still a worry.
The trick here is to basically deter cockroaches from using your home as their home, and at the same time, you need to try and find a way to destroy their nest so that they don’t keep coming back.
Cockroaches like moist, dark and damp areas to hide in, with easy access to food and water. Often, a kitchen or a bathroom provides exactly what they need so these are the likely places that you will find them or evidence of them.
Seek out droppings in corners and cupboards. Sometimes they can look like mouse droppings but if you have seen a roach scurrying around you can almost be sure they belong to them. Also, look for any cracks and places that the roaches may be used to get into your property.
Once you have their paths mapped out it can help in the control.
You need to clean everything, sanitize worktops and make sure no food crumbs or still water is left around for them to feast on. This includes wiping sinks dry and drying washing up that has been left to drain.
You then need to bait them with something that they can take back to the nest so the problem can be dealt with at the source.
If you loath roaches, then you probably also would not want anything to do with their poop. Roaches are loathsome on so many levels. Not only are they ugly and creepy but their poop also carries diseases.
Where do Roaches like to live?
Roaches can live in so many environments provided those environments are moist and have plenty of food. Such places include garbage damps that are outdoors or generally in areas that are ridden with dirt.
These creatures are omnivorous and are known to feed on dead bits of skin as well as cooked veggies, fruit and cereals. Essentially, roaches eat almost everything that humans eat.
Just because roaches are commonly found in dirty areas, it should not be misconceived that they cannot show up in clean environments as well.
Roaches can also find their way to the cleanest and highly sanitized homes. They can do this by migrating from the neighboring apartment. They can find their way to your home through wrappers and boxes from a supermarket or any other retail outlet.
So do not be surprised to see a roach in your home despite maintaining high levels of hygiene. Once in your house home they will commonly hide under the sink under stoves, refrigerators, and behind cupboards as they begin to breed.
How do you know you have roaches in the home?
Roaches are nocturnal creatures that like to scavenge only in the dead of the night when everyone else is asleep. So you are likely not to spot them even though they are there.
However they will tend to live a trail of feces on some of their favorite spots and high traffic areas. These includes, inside cabinets that are not frequently accessed. If you notice this, you should be quick to cut off access to any food and water sources that are nearby.
Roaches poop looks like spilled pepper or may appear as coffee grinds depending on the type of cockroach. Spotting roach feces in your home is an unmistakable indication that you have roaches in the house.
Are Roach feces dangerous?
Most pathogens consumed by roaches their food will multiply in their digestive system. That is particularly why roach feces can contaminate food and drinking water.
A significant amount of roach feces in the house can result in a distinct musty smell. The feces once dried up can end up as dust containing cockroach feces or roach body parts. Inhaling such dust can result in an allergic reaction as well as asthma, especially in children.
A roache’s body, particularly its serrated legs are capable of picking up salmonella in filthy places such garbage damps and sewers and depositing it in food. This is the pathogen that causes typhoid.
A vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter can be used to remove roach droppings once spotted. One should be careful to dispose the vacuumed feces properly with sanitation in mind. Then use warm soapy water to scrub off any visible markings or remnants of the feces on the boards.
Clearing the odor of roach feces can be a challenge. That is because they may have pooped behind boards and in wall cavities where you do not have access to for vacuuming or cleaning. If you have a roach feces problem, the best cause of action is to call a licensed pest officer to eradicate the Roaches which are the root cause of the feces problem.
If you have never seen a roach, perhaps you may want to keep it that way so that your memory is not tainted by the ugliness of this pest. But on second thoughts, it is important to know how the different species of roaches look like.
That way, not only are you able to identify them when you see any, but you also know the step to take in getting rid of them.
In a nutshell, cockroaches are nocturnal pest that look hideous and have the ability to populate fairly fast. They are prone to harboring diseases on their bodies and their faces can also easily contaminate food and water resulting in health problems for the whole family.
So it best to kill them on site or exterminate them from your home in the event that you have an infestation.
Anatomy of a cockroach
Hard as it is to believe, each cockroach has all the below body parts.
- Salivary glands
- Reproductive system
- gastric caecea
- fat bodies
- Malpighian tubules
Although a cockroach may appear hideous, it is a well put together pest with elaborate body parts and functions.
Part of the reason why cockroaches are nocturnal and fairly elusive, is that they contain more than a thousand lenses on their eyes that allow them to see multiple things at once and therefore react in time against a predators.
The two appendages known as cerci found in their abdomen also give them an unfair advantage against predators because they have the ability to sense even slight air movements and forewarn the roach to take evasive action before an approaching predator gets close. The feelers or antennae are useful features to the roach because they use them for their sense of smell.
Types of roaches
While their overall anatomy will be the same across all roaches, they may differ in their size, behaviour and physical abilites. Identifying the species correctly does give you an advantage in formulating a plan of action when exterminating them from your home. There are more than a thousand species of roaches, but here are the most common that you are likely to have a run in with in your home
- German cockroach
This is by far the most common species in households. They Have a life span of about 12 months and are prolific egg layers. They multiply like bushfire. They have a pale brown color and two distinct dark brown stripes on the back. Their length ranges from13 -16 mm.
2.Brown branded roach
They have a reddish brown to dark brown color with two yellow bands on the back. This roach has an average lifespan of 11 months. They can grow up to 13 mm and their males are capable of flight.
They have a reddish brown to dark brown color but are noticeably bigger with adults growing to lengths of 53mm. They are fond of inhabiting households that have food storage such as Warehouse or your pantry. Their lifespan is about 2 years and both the male and female are capable of flight.
These are only some of the most common roach species. Incase you see that your house is being overrun by roaches, call a licensed pest officer to help you get rid of the roach problem.
Most of the time, German roaches brought inside grocery bags or restaurant bags. They are often found in grocery stores and restaurants, and one of the reasons how to get rid of German roaches is to never want to keep the plastic bags you get from the store.
Having an infestation of roaches in your kitchen is a serious matter. When it starts, it may not seem like a big deal. You may notice that they often come out at night when the lights are off.
They always start around the refrigerator in the kitchen because they like warm dark areas. Most people will purchase Raid at the store and spray them when they show up in the evenings.
Roaches have a tendency to get inside any crevice or crack of a house. However, the presence of roaches in the house might lead to different health risks. So, if one ever finds a roach in any corner of the house, then there are bound to be many of them in other corners.
Thus, immediate steps should be taken to get rid of them. Some of the most effective ways to kill roaches are mentioned below.
Firstly, it is essential to discover where they are coming from. They are nocturnal in nature, so searching for them at night might help. Some probable places are cupboards, pantries, ceilings, walls, etc.
The path that they use to enter the house, all of them should be sealed. This might be a little tedious task, but it is definitely going to be helpful.
In markets, roach killing powders are available. Those can be used too. Or else a roach food can be prepared by making one part of it with boric acid, another with granulated sugar and the last part being made of flour.
The sugar content attracts the roaches, the flour ensures that the roach gets stuck and the boric acid kills it. These can be put in all probable places, where there might be chances of roach existence.
Even sprays that help to kill roaches can be of great help. However, while spraying, all safety measures should be taken.
Roach bait is available in a cover that is childproof, or it is applied in the form of a gel which consists of appealing roach food with a lethal poison that starts impacting after some time. Roaches might eat some of the bait and might carry the leftover to their hiding places where other roaches stay. This may help to get rid of some other hidden roaches too.
The usage of water jars is the least expensive and simplest method. A water jar can be placed anywhere where there are probable chances of roach existence. They might get inside the jar, but would not be able to escape.
Taking suggestions from a professional is yet another good option. If none of the aforementioned methods yield satisfying outcomes, then a professional exterminating team can be called for further suggestions.
They would look into the root cause of the problem and would try their best to make one’s house completely roach-free.
This is not a particularly exciting task but finding roach poop can be beneficial to how you deal with cockroaches in the long term. What if we told you finding cockroach poop is the key to getting rid of cockroaches. Where there is roach poop is where they congregate and close by is their food and water source. This is where you begin to treat your house and exterminate the cockroach populations in your home.
Where to find cockroach poop
As mentioned above cockroach poop is always close by their source of food and water. But cockroaches also leave their poop wherever they travel and eat. If you find a large amount of poop in one area they probably live there as well. Typically roach poop is found in the cupboards, room corners, in the storage rooms, inside the cabinets and under appliances. They also live in the pantry and garbage can or the compost area not to mention hiding in the baseboards and you will find their poop dotting those areas as well.
Unfortunately, roaches will defecate near your food sources because these are also their food source thereby contaminating your food.
How to identify cockroach poop
Fecal matter varies depending on the roach species you are dealing with. The smaller the cockroach, like the brown banded cockroach or the German cockroach, the smaller the size of their droppings. In fact, their droppings look like small coffee granules or black pepper granules. The larger species leave dropping that are cylindrical in shape and slightly larger in size. This is the poop you expect to see from the American cockroach and other larger species. Their poop is black in color, the size of a grain of rice and has a blunt end with ridges running through the face of the droppings.
Getting rid of cockroach poop
The best way to get rid of cockroach poop is by vacuuming the droppings off the surface where they lay. Just ensure the vacuum has a HEPA filter to reduce air contamination from the poop. Next clean the area with hot soapy water which will help loosen the smear of the droppings. Always wear gloves during the washing process to clean out the poop and keep your hands uncontaminated. Keep in mind that some of the dropping are along the walls and inside the walls so make sure that you eventually get a professional exterminator to get rid of the remaining fecal matter in the base boards and other hidden areas. If you don’t you may be leaving behind pheromone attractants that just call out to more cockroaches even when the original ones are gone.
Cockroaches take the crown for disgusting and filthy creatures on the face of the earth. They may not be the only ones but they are right up there with flies, rats, and slugs. There is nothing one wouldn’t od to prevent a roach infestation which is why the following cockroach killers will come in handy and change the balance in your house in a couple of days.
Insecticide and pesticides are effective in killing the adult cockroach as well as eliminating the nymph and the eggs. They can be used directly in the cockroach nest with quick and effective results. You can also opt for the gel killer which is ready to use and will be in place longer deterring the reoccurrence of roaches in your space. The gel is applied using a syringe and it is applied undiluted along the skirting board of the room. The gel solution works actively for seven days.
Roach traps are typically round boxes that feature several entrances with a poison inside to kill the cockroach. It features a smell that attracts the cockroach and the roach can leave the trap carrying with it some of the poison to its lair. This effectively kills the roach and others in the lair.
Roach traps can be effective for 2 weeks to up to 3 months and each commercially bought trap typically comes with several traps in the package. Companies like Raid, Raptor and Combat have some of the best roach traps in the market.
This is dry fog that works effectively by penetrating any environment where the roaches hide and killing them in their nests. This is the product to use where other products cannot reach and it can work in any environment from the office to the home and warehouse as well. It is the closest product to what a professional exterminator can use.
How do cockroaches survive extermination?
Cockroaches can survive extermination because they are fast on their feet and prolific hiders. A cockroach moves at 4.8 kilometers per hour which is quite fast for an insect. They can also eat just once in a month and stay in hiding for the rest of the time. Females are also able to keep producing offspring after mating with a male just once in their lifetime.
Cockroaches survive extermination because they can go without breathing for 40 minutes and it can feel you approach because of the hairs on its legs. This give it ample time to change direction up to 25 times in one second. Interestingly, a cockroach can continue living for a week without its head attached .
Getting rid of cockroaches is not as easy as one may think. The secret is to prevent an infestation in the first place. If the above remedies don’t work it’s time to call the big guns in; the professional exterminators.