The German cockroach is the most common species
in British Columbia, can be found wherever moisture, food
and shelter are available. Cockroaches (eggs included), are
brought in usually by man's belongings, luggage, boxes or
Life cycle of cockroaches:
Cockroaches have three stages in
their life cycle: eggs, nymph and adult. Adults are ½ inch-
5/8 inch long light to medium brown with two dark distinctive
stripes behind the head.
The young cockroaches, or nymphs, are wingless, and usually
only a few millimeters long ; they are white on hatching but
darken within a few hours. They grow in stages by repeatedly
shedding the cuticle or skin. They are fully grown after several
months to more than a year, depending on the species. Females
produce one egg capsule every 3-4 weeks. Each capsule contains
25-45 eggs. The female will carry the egg capsule with her
until it is ready to hatch. The young (nymphs) will be able
to breed in as little as 36 days. Adult German roaches can live up to one year They are mostly active at night; in
the daytime they hide in cracks and crevices in walls, door
frames and furniture, and in secure places in bathrooms, cupboards other electric devices, drains and sewer systems, If they
are seen during the day, it is usually because their hiding
places are overcrowded due to a large population or there
is a shortage of food and water supply. Any crack or crevice
located near a source of food and/or water is prime harborage,
and they spend about 75% of their time in such harborages.
Cockroaches infested areas:
Infestations are generally found in kitchens and bathrooms,
but can inhabit other areas if there is a heavy population. Cockroaches eat a great variety of food, including all food used for human consumption . They prefer
starchy and sugary materials. They sip milk and nibble at
cheese, meats, pastry, grain products, sugar and sweet chocolate.
They also feed on cardboard, book bindings, ceiling boards
containing starch, the sized inner lining of shoe soles, their
own cast-off skins, dead and crippled cockroaches, fresh and
dried blood, excrement, sputum, and the fingernails and toenails
of babies and sleeping or sick persons.
How are they harmful?
Cockroaches are able to carry pathogenic
bacteria onto food which is responsible for food poisoning
outbreaks because of, there movement through washrooms, refuse
heaps and sewers. Another risk to human health arises from
the ability of cockroach egg shells, molting skin and fras
to cause allergic reactions or asthma that can be very serious
for some people. Contact us for professional management options.
Signs of cockroach infestations
The most conclusive evidence of cockroach infestation is simply seeing them in the home. However it is not that easy to spot then during day time since they are nocturnal creatures. A distinguishable and pungent odor would also be left behind by the roaches which make it easy to identify their presence. If the infestation is very severe, the cockroaches can be seen during the day time. This may be because their habitat must be overcrowded or they are in search of food. Since the insects are quite distinctive, they can be easily indentified.
One of the most prominent signs that the cockroaches have infested your home is by noticing the presence of material called as shell casings. These are actually the egg cases from recently hatched cockroaches and are seen as small dark brown oval shaped casings. This would be seen in most places of infestation. Another common sign is the presence of cockroach specks or wastes. It appears dark in color and is fecal pellets and regurgitated food. It may look like grains of ground pepper.
Interesting facts about cockroaches
The insects have been on the earth surface for more than 400 million years. This means that they have proved themselves as good survivors. It has been found out that the cockroaches were alive during the age if dinosaurs. They are in fact considered as the first flying animals. Like termites, some of the species of roaches have the capability to digest wood and feed on them. Sailors on infested ships used to wear gloves while sleeping so as to keep the insects from nibbling their fingernails. The roaches have an intense liking for the glues, especially the ones on envelopes, glue bindings at the back of the books and on the back of postage stamps. They are even capable of living up to a month without their head. And above all, it has been said that the crushed cockroaches applied on stinging wounds have proved to relieve pain.
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