Who doesn’t love a little good, old-fashioned American ingenuity? Here in Beaumont, people are always looking for new ways to save money with little time and effort, but there are some problems you are just not equipped to handle yourself. One such problem homeowners in Beaumont regularly face is a cockroach infestation. Cockroaches are troublesome insects to discover living in your home, and spotting so much as one cockroach can be a good indicator that an infestation is brewing. These deadly pests are difficult to eliminate, spread several notable bacteria and diseases, and are just plain gross.
When you’re in the heat of a cockroach infestation, you may be tempted to attempt to control the problem yourself. Unfortunately, D.I.Y. pest control methods and products often cause more harm than good. Proper pest control requires chemical applications that can be dangerous if not handled by a trained professional, and these materials are just not as effective as professional products. Professional exterminators are highly trained in the responsible handling and use of pesticides. The wrong products and treatments may only temporarily drive pests away, only to return in larger numbers than before.
If you’re concerned about cockroaches in your home, you’ve come to the right place. Since 2000, Pestco Professional Pest Control has proudly served the residents of Beaumont and surrounding areas. With more than 30 years of combined Beaumont pest control experience, our professional exterminators can tackle your cockroach problem, guaranteed! Use this guide to learn how to tell if you have a cockroach problem, why cockroaches in your home are hazardous to your health, several factors that attract roaches to your home, and how to get rid of cockroaches.
How To Tell If You Have A Cockroach Problem
The most important thing you need to remember about cockroaches in Beaumont is that they can find their way into even the cleanest of homes. Easy access to food and water is all a cockroach needs to find their way into your house, so practice regular housekeeping to deter them from entering. Open trash containers, compost, gardens, and pet food are all objects that are easily accessible for cockroaches to forage for food.
So, what does a cockroach look like? The answer to this question largely depends on the specific species you’re dealing with. Cockroaches generally have oval-shaped bodies with wings, antennae, and six spiny legs. There are over 4,000 species of cockroaches; the most common types of cockroaches our communities deal with include American cockroaches, Asian cockroaches, brown-banded cockroaches, and German cockroaches. Each of these species has distinctive features from its relatives.
The American cockroach is the largest of the household cockroaches and a major pest in Summerlin and throughout the United States. They are reddish-brown with a pale “figure eight”-shaped pattern on the backs of their heads, ranging anywhere from 1 ¼ to 2 ⅛ inches in length.
Despite their moniker, American cockroaches are native to Africa and the Middle East and are believed to have been brought westward due to human commerce. American cockroaches live in private residences after heavy rainfall and are more frequently encountered in commercial settings such as bakeries, grocery stores, restaurants, and food processing facilities. In any structure, American cockroaches prefer to hide in dark, damp areas, including basements, drains, sewers, and stream tunnels.
Measuring up to one inch in length, the Asian cockroach is one of the larger species of cockroaches living in our area. These shiny-black cockroaches are sometimes called “waterbugs” because they prefer to hang out in damp areas. Since they are more likely to enter your home in search of water, Asian cockroaches can often be found near toilets, sinks, and exposed pipes or plumbing. Though they can survive up to a month without food, they can live only two weeks without water.
After developing into adults, Asian cockroaches usually live for six to twelve months, with females producing an average of 200 eggs in a lifetime. Female oriental cockroaches carry their egg capsules around for thirty hours before dropping them in a safe, protected area. Sixty days later, the nymphs hatch and reach maturity six to twelve months later.
Brown-banded cockroaches are a small, invasive species that entered our country in 1903, first traveling from Cuba to Florida. They are brown with pronounced banding across their wings and measure about ½ inch in length.
Unlike all other cockroach species, brown-banded cockroaches are scavengers that will eat almost any organic material they come across, including bodily fluids and decaying matter. The brown-banded cockroach sometimes eats glue or paste and starch or color dyes, so you may find them nibbling on books, envelopes, stamps, and wallpaper. They also search for substances such as body oils and skin cells and can be found eating non-food items like nylon stockings that contain traces of these cells.
Adult German cockroaches are light brown to tan with two dark stripes running parallel down their backs. German cockroaches range from ½ to ⅝ inches in length – slightly larger than the brown-banded cockroaches in your home.
German cockroaches prefer warm and humid environments close to food and water sources. They frequently invade residential properties by hitchhiking in cardboard boxes, grocery bags, and secondhand appliances. Once these roaches live comfortably indoors, homeowners will most likely find a German cockroach crawling around the bathroom or kitchen. To discourage German cockroaches from invading, you should make a concerted effort to keep kitchen counters and floors clean and free of crumbs. It’s also important to vacuum frequently and dispose of garbage regularly.
Because cockroaches are so good at hiding and may often live in your home for some time before the infestation is discovered, knowing the signs of a cockroach infestation is just as important as identifying cockroaches in your home. If you ever find exoskeletons, droppings, or a foul odor that you can’t place, immediately call for professional help.
Cockroaches In Your Home Are Hazardous To Your Health
It might go without saying that cockroaches are dangerous pests. Studies have shown that cockroaches can spread over 40 bacteria, parasites, and other deadly pathogens. As soon as they find their way inside, they will begin contaminating surfaces and food with the pathogens they carry on their legs, bodies, saliva, and excrement. Cockroaches carry diseases including cholera, dysentery, E. coli infection, gastroenteritis, giardia, listeriosis, poliomyelitis, salmonellosis, and parasitic worms. These filthy insects also trigger allergic reactions and asthma attacks among children and the elderly. Cockroaches also create a foul odor when gathered together in large numbers. This unpleasant odor affects the taste of food unknowingly stored near your cockroach infestation.
Factors That Attract Roaches Into Your Home
As we mentioned earlier, even the cleanest homes can attract a cockroach infestation. The cockroach is drawn to any structure that can satisfy its most basic needs: food, water, and shelter. Not only are roaches interested in water sources, but their ideal living environment must also have ample moisture. If your home has moisture problems such as leaky drains, faucets, or water-damaged wood, it’s best to contact a professional to take care of your moisture problem.
Another one of the most significant driving forces of a cockroach is food. Cockroaches feed on both edible and non-edible matter such as feces and decaying organic materials. They also will chew on objects such as cardboard, paper, and books – particularly craft glues and book bindings because of their starch content.
Once you’ve found cockroaches in your house, getting them to leave for good can be very difficult. You are far better off trying to prevent the infestation from happening in the first place than trying to eradicate them once they’ve infested your home. Here are some helpful prevention tips you can put into practice to help keep cockroaches out of your home:
- Clean out clutter, especially large amounts of cardboard.
- Clear out yard debris.
- Inspect your home regularly for roaches and possible entry points.
- Keep food storage and preparation areas clean and sanitary.
- Look out for and dry out areas that collect moisture.
- Pick up crumbs and food debris inside and out.
- Seal and fill in small holes and cracks near doors and windows.
- Store food in sealed, airtight containers.
Getting rid of cockroaches just for them to return can be frustrating. These tenacious pests can not be beaten without professional help. When you partner with Pestco Professional Pest Control, you can rest assured your cockroach problems will go away for good. Our local pest professionals practice the most advanced Integrated Pest Management products and techniques available to guarantee you a pest-free home. Contact Pestco Professional Pest Control today to request your free inspection.