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Cockroach Identification & Prevention


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What are cockroaches?

Cockroaches are medium-sized insects that have broad, flat, oval-shaped bodies. Most species of cockroaches grow to between 1/2 to 2 inches long. These insects have long antennae, and a shield-shaped section behind their head called a pronotum. Some cockroaches have fully developed wings, while others do not, but most winged are not known for being strong flyers. Cockroaches are nocturnal and quickly scatter out of light or when disturbed.

Most cockroaches live outside and away from people and cause us no harm. However, a handful of species have discovered the benefits of living with people. In our area the two most common species of cockroaches to invade our homes and businesses are the German cockroach, and the American cockroach.

cockroach near a dish on a kitchen table

Are cockroaches dangerous?

Before moving into your home, roaches most likely traveled through some less than sanitary places, including trash piles, sewers, and drains. When traveling through these locations, they pick up parasites, human pathogens, bacteria, and viruses. Once in your home, they will make quick work of spreading things like salmonella, dysentery, and other bacteria that cause digestive problems to your food and food surfaces.

Other problems that cockroaches cause when living inside our homes include feeding on non-food items like toothpaste and paper, creating unpleasant odors, and staining walls, floors, upholstered furniture, and curtains with their excrement.

Why do I have a cockroach problem?

Listed below are some of the many reasons why cockroaches have become a problem on your property:

  • While out foraging, roaches have discovered food sources on your property.
  • Cockroaches have found openings in your home’s exterior walls while looking for food or a place to escape harsh weather.
  • Cockroaches entered your home on used furniture, appliances, or electronics.
  • They have hitchhiked their way inside in grocery bags, deliveries, packages, or potted plants.
  • In apartment buildings, cockroaches move to different apartments through walls or floors.

Where will I find cockroaches?

Where cockroaches live is specific to their species. Some species like the German cockroach prefer to live indoors, while others like the American cockroach prefer to live outside. Having a professional help you identify the species of roach residing on your property is important in order to eliminate the infestation.

Most species of cockroaches are attracted to areas of moisture and live outside in moist soil, in dense vegetation, under mulch, around drains, near sewers, and under trash receptacles. Inside, cockroaches prefer to stay hidden from people in dark, hard-to-reach areas. Cabinets under sinks, basements, crawls spaces, kitchen drawers, and under large appliances are typical places where cockroaches hide.

How do I get rid of cockroaches?

For a long-term solution to ridding your North Carolina property of cockroaches, it is best to partner with a professional. At Ray’s Pest Control & Wildlife Removal, we work closely with our customers to learn about the specific pest problems they have been experiencing. Our pest experts provide our customers with the highest quality service to solve their current pest problem and keep them from returning. Since 1972 our family has been helping the families in the Winston-Salem, and surrounding areas maintain pest-free properties.

If you are experiencing problems with cockroaches, reach out to Ray’s Pest Control and learn about our effective cockroach control solutions. For more information about our residential or commercial pest control programs, call us today!

How can I prevent cockroaches in the future?

Don’t leave whether or not cockroaches invade your property up to chance; partner with Ray’s Pest Control and implement the following cockroach prevention tips:

  • Eliminate food sources. Cockroaches are scavengers and will take advantage of any crumb or other food source they come across. Eliminate as many sources of food in and around your home as possible. Make sure all trash is placed into trash containers with tight lids. Pick up your pet’s uneaten food every evening. If you have an outdoor eating area, make sure it is kept clean. Keep garden areas maintained and free of fruits and vegetables that have fallen to the ground. Inside your house, regularly vacuum, wipe down counters, and clean behind large appliances. Store food in the fridge or containers with air-tight lids.
  • Reduce excess moisture. Both American cockroaches and German cockroaches gravitate to areas of moisture. Keep the soil around your foundation as dry as possible. Make sure gutters are directing water away from your home’s exterior and cut back overgrown shrubbery from the outside of your house. Repair leaky pipes and eliminate areas of standing water on your property. Inside your home, use dehumidifiers to keep humidity levels low. Air conditioners also help to reduce humidity levels.
  • Seal entry points. Keep cockroaches from moving into your home by inspecting used furniture, appliances, electronics, or deliveries for cockroaches before bringing them inside. Inspect the exterior of your house for openings in the foundation or exterior walls. Place covers over vents and drains coming into your home. Replace torn screens or weatherstripping. It is also a good prevention measure to put door sweeps on exterior doors, especially basement doors.

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