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Cockroach Identification

 To the untrained eye, all cockroaches may look alike. However, there are actually five species of significance. German, Brown-banded, Oriental, American and Common Wood cockroaches are all unwelcome pests.

The most common cockroach is the German cockroach. It has a flattened oval body with long spiny legs and measures 15 mm (3/4") when fully grown. Both male and female are winged. Color is light brown with two dark brown stripes running lengthwise on the thorax (middle section).

Cockroach Habitat

The main attractions for a cockroach are food, water and shelter. To them, almost anything is food - any foodstuff, paper, cloth, plants and even glue used for binding books. They can be found in every part of the home, but most prefer some kind of damp environment. Since most cockroaches are active at night, many people may be completely unaware of their presence in their home. Cockroaches are a public health concern because they have been known to carry Salmonella bacteria - the organisms responsible for food poisoning. 

Although some people worry that admitting to an infestation of cockroaches indicates poor housekeeping, at times even the most conscientious housekeeper may find it impossible to avoid an infestation. 

Cockroach Life Cycle

The German female cockroach carries an egg capsule containing approximately 40 eggs which she drops prior to hatching. Development from eggs to adults takes three to four months and cockroaches live up to a year. The female may produce up to eight egg cases in her lifetime. An infestation of cockroaches can number in the thousands.

Cockroach Prevention

Although little can be done to prevent an infestation, the practice of good sanitation and the elimination of accessible food are ways to minimize the extent of the infestation. Careful inspection of produce or packages entering the home can help to prevent cockroaches from establishing themselves in your building.


Questions & Answers

Do cockroaches cause damage?
No. The presence of cockroaches is not normally associated with damage to buildings.

Are cockroaches hazardous to humans?
Yes. Because of their movements through various habitats, including refuse heaps and sewers, they are capable of transmitting diseases to man, including: salmonella bacteria (food poisoning) and many forms of viruses.

What attracts cockroaches?
Cockroaches are attracted to food, water, and shelter. They will eat anything and are particularly attracted to starchy foods.

When are cockroaches most common?
Cockroaches are active year-round within structures.

When am I most likely to see cockroaches?
Cockroaches are nocturnal and are most active at night. Any sudden light will cause scurry for shelter.

Are cockroaches only found under unclean conditions?
No. They can be found under the cleanest conditions, wherever food and warmth are present. For this reason they are a major problem in hospitals, hotels, restaurants, bakeries, butcher shops, multi-unit residences and homes. Their habitat is around sinks, behind stoves and refrigerators, in drains and cracks.

Do cockroaches die off in cold months?
No. These hardy and very adaptable insects are primarily indoor pests and infestations are not affected by outside temperature.

If I have an infestation of cockroaches, what can be done to eliminate them?
The elimination of cockroaches is a difficult and time consuming project. NoPest has several products developed for the control of pests such as the cockroach. Due to the nature of cockroaches, control is a process requiring intensive product knowledge and a professional should be consulted for complete elimination.

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