The German Cockroach

The German Cockroach

The German Cockroach Regularly Hides Within Cracks On Interior Walls That Are As Narrow As 4 To 5 Millimeters In Width

Cockroaches have existed for at least three hundred and fifty million years, and while most of the world’s cockroach species inhabit wet and humid tropical regions, several species are well known pests in the temperate United States. While the south sees a greater abundance and diversity of cockroach pest species than the north, the German, American and Oriental cockroach species are the primary indoor roach pests in all areas of the country. In addition to being widely considered very unpleasant to look at, cockroaches carry dozens of disease-causing microorganisms due to their habit of congregating within pathogen-rich environments, such as sewers, outhouses, landfills, and garbage receptacles. If that is not bad enough, living and dead cockroaches, as well as their shed skins, feces, and urine serve as indoor allergens.

The German and brown-banded cockroach are the only two roach species in the US that dwell naturally within indoor environments. Due to their preference for humid conditions and temperatures ranging from 85 to 95 degrees, German cockroaches commonly establish infestations in hidden areas within kitchens and bathrooms. These areas include behind and beneath dishwashers, beneath sinks, beneath flooring and within wall voids. The much larger American cockroach species prefers moist basement environments, but they can quickly adapt to thrive in any location within a home. Unlike the German cockroach, the American cockroach prefers to remain in the natural environment unless inhospitable weather conditions force the pests to seek refuge within homes, sewers, garages and other sheltered environments.

Like most roach pest species, American cockroaches can reproduce within homes, and they often gather around shrubs and overgrown vegetation adjacent to foundations where they are likely to find their way into crawl spaces and basements. Since American cockroaches are attracted to moisture, homeowners should keep vegetation around homes minimal, as doing so will keep moisture content near foundations low. It is not uncommon for roaches to hitchhike into homes within grocery bags, cardboard boxes, and firewood, so inspecting these items for insect pests is important before bringing them indoors. Sealing cracks and crevices on the interior and exterior walls of homes will deprive cockroaches of their hiding spots as well as entry points into houses. While sealing indoor crevices, it is important to know that the ½ to ⅝ inch long German cockroach is capable of nestling into cracks as narrow as 4 to 5 mm in width.

Have you ever found an abundance of cockroaches near your home’s foundation?