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Cockroach Identification

Cockroaches hold a disgusting place in the minds of most people. It crawls. It hides under you toaster. It is always associated with filth. But, there are lots of different types of cockroaches and each have different habits and different food preferences. So, you need to know how to do cockroach identification before you call in the troops to eradicate them.

There are five species of cockroaches that are considered pests in North America. They range in size from the small, but resilient German cockroach to the larger American cockroach. Cockroaches have broad, flat bodies and long antennae. Thin, membranous wings of cockroaches can help distinguish cockroaches from beetles, which have hard wings that are not transparent. Pre-adult nymph cockroaches do not have wings and are smaller in size.

The German cockroach is about a half inch long. It is reddish brown in color and it has two black stripes behind its head. It lives near humans so it can feed on out waste products. It is most commonly found in places where food is being prepared like kitchens or in pantries. German cockroaches reproduce quickly, so an infestation can be difficult to control.

The Brown-banded cockroach is about a half inch long. It is golden brown or dark brown in color with light colored bands on its abdomen. They prefer warm areas and are more common in the southern United States, but can be found in northern areas when they are shipped there in boxes or food containers. They will seek out warm places indoors and travel more widely around indoor areas than other cockroach species. They will hide in secluded places high up off of the floor in closets or behind hanging objects on walls.

The Oriental cockroach is shiny black and about one and a quarter inches long. The wings on the male are shorter than the body and the females have only rudimentary wings and cannot fly. Oriental cockroaches prefer damp, cool places like basements and crawl spaces. They can enter the home through drains and leaky water pipes.

The American cockroach is the largest of the cockroach pests. It is one and a half inches to two inches long. It is reddish brown in color. They have wings but rarely fly. The American cockroach can be found more often in open spaces than other cockroach species. They prefer damp, dark places like basements and crawl spaces. They enter buildings in search of food and to avoid extreme weather conditions.

Smoky brown cockroaches are very similar in appearance to American cockroaches, but they are a little smaller. They are dark brown or mahogany in color. They have well developed wings and sometimes fly towards lights at night. They prefer tropical environments and are more common in the southern US, but can be transported to northern climates with firewood or fruit shipments. They feed on decaying plant materials, or almost anything else they can find.

Most people get freaked out when they see a cockroach. It turns out that we have good reason to be disgusted by them. Cockroaches can make you sick if they get on the food you eat, spreading diseases like salmonella or dysentery.

Cockroaches often come into the house from sewer lines where they may have come into contact with rotting food or excrement. They can also cause allergic reactions for people caused by the feces or molted skins that they leave behind after they feed.

Cockroaches come indoors because they are seeking food and water sources. They are often found in kitchens and bathrooms where they enter by way of loose plumbing fixtures. They will eat almost any kind of organic material, even bookbindings or wallpaper paste. They are very adaptable and can survive very harsh conditions. It is said that cockroaches would be the sole survivors on the planet if nuclear fallout were to occur because they have a strong resistance to radiation and live in sheltered places where they could avoid the blast. They can even survive for up to a week if their heads are chopped off because their body structure is much simpler than humans. The cockroach species has existed on the planet for 300 million years and has had plenty of time to make survival adaptations.

To get rid of cockroaches you don't need a nuclear bomb, you simply need to eliminate their food and water supply. Dirty kitchens or leaky plumbing will attract cockroaches. Clean up food messes by vacuuming. Fix leaky plumbing and ventilate moist spaces. Use caulk to seal up cracks at ground level where cockroaches might be finding shelter from cold weather outside. Clean out gutters where rotting leaves have built up or other areas around the house or in the basement where leaf debris has collected and you will have gone a long way to getting rid of cockroaches.

Many people, companies, and restaurants choose to call a pest control company hoping that this would be a less time consuming way around the problem. Today, pest control companies use an integrated pest management method of combining several treatment options. Here are some of the products they will use. These same products are available to you on this website. Click the links and you will get product information:  Maxforce FC GelSuspend SC, Maxforce Complete Granulal Insect Bait Advion Roach Bait Areans. Pros will use a combination of these options. More detailed descriptions of these different roach control methods can be found in other articles.

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