Cockroaches are one of the most common pests found in Auckland homes and businesses. Cockroaches can act as carriers and spread bacteria and germs and by having roaches in your household leaves you exposed to certain allergies, skin irritations and even asthma. Their resilience makes them a formidable foe. A cockroach spends 75% of its time resting so if you think you’ve bested them, you may find they are just getting their beauty sleep before re-engaging.
Before you tackle a cockroach infestation it is best to know what you are up against. Here are some of the survival tactics these pests boast:
Despite these facts, it doesn’t take rocket science to get rid of a cockroach infestation in your house, just some proven tactics. And step one is finding the infestation.
How To Find A Cockroach Infestation
If you spot a cockroach in your property, there is a good chance that there is an infestation nearby. Cockroaches give out a scent that attracts more roaches. Cockroaches can live up to 2 years and start reproducing after 6 weeks. A female cockroach can lay 5-30 egg sacs containing 12-40 eggs. Therefore, there is no time to waste in getting rid of the infestation because cockroaches sure are not wasting any time in increasing their population.
Once you have found the roach you should try to identify it. The most common species found in New Zealand is the Gisborne Cockroach, American cockroach and German cockroach. This will help to more effectively treat the infestation. See our article on cockroaches in NZ for more info. If you can’t be sure which species it is don’t fear as most of these species are inclined to a wet and moist places which are free of vibrations and noise. Common places which fit the bill are the bathroom, kitchen, cupboard cracks, underneath drawers or under the fridge.
Common indications of a cockroach infestation are:
Certain species can produce unpleasant smells. A strong oily or musty odor can be an indication of a large infestation.
Cockroach droppings are a clear indication of an infestation. The amount of visible feces is a good indication of the extent or duration of an infestation. Small cockroaches produce droppings that resemble coffee grounds or black pepper, while larger roaches produce oval droppings.
Cockroach egg cases are another good indication of an infestation. The eggs cases are oval shaped and dark and they contain many eggs so are easier to see than the eggs themselves. They are normally hidden in dark places so check seams in furniture and behind cupboards and book cases.
What To Do Once You Have Found An Infestation
Now that you have found the source of the issue, the next thing to do is asses the extend of the infestation. There are a number of different ways to treat an infestation but the goal is always to poison the cockroaches and allow the pesticide to spread throughout the nest, thereby treating the source. By spraying the nest you could cause them to scatter and if they don’t die, they could start a new nest somewhere else. If you find an infestation it is best to get in touch with a professional pest control company as they will either direct you with the best treatment for your infestation or tackle the issue themselves.
Next you need to seal cracks in walls and foundations as well as any other openings which could allow them to enter and setup a nest. Start with the infestation area and work backwards towards the nearest entry point. Make sure you recycle any cardboard and papers lying around as they provide a favorable environment for cockroaches.
Lastly, focus on cleanliness. Store leftover food in tight containers, don’t leave any food or bread crumbs open on the kitchen shelf, pack dirty dishes into the dishwasher and make sure that the sink is clean. Keep living areas dry and clean, administering a regular insect repellent, clearing away any rubbish, and removing human and food waste.
The cleanliness does not limit to the inside only. You have to make sure that the outside of your house is clean too. A regular, professional pest control program will ensure that cockroaches are stopped before they enter your house and nest.