German Cockroaches: How To Get Rid Of Them
Extremely well known and extremely durable, German cockroaches can proliferate just about anywhere. Furthermore, they can cause a lot of problems for homeowners, renters, guests, or even business owners. Even if you don’t find yourself dealing with German cockroaches in the present, a little information can certainly go a long way with these creatures.
Learning how to prevent a German cockroach infestation is only the beginning. It can also be extremely useful to know how to get rid of German cockroaches, if you find yourself stuck with them.
How To Identify German Cockroaches
Adult German cockroaches are easy to spot. All you need to do is look for the light brown/tan coloring, which is highlighted 2 black horizontal stripes. You can find these stripes on its pronotum. More specifically, it is located immediately behind the head.
Younger German cockroaches, which are also known as nymphs, are going to be almost black in appearance. You should still be able to find those stripes. On average, these cockroaches can grow to reach a size of thirteen to sixteen millimeters.
Furthermore, while German cockroaches do have wings, they rarely fly. Generally speaking, German cockroaches prefer to run along surfaces.
While German cockroaches do not bite or sting, they do tend to live in areas that could be holding dangerous bacteria. Dumpsters and sewers are good examples of what we are talking about.
Other Important Facts About German Cockroaches
One of the important things to remember about German cockroaches is the fact that they can exist just about anywhere. To be sure, in terms of an ideal habitat, German cockroaches prefer warm, wet climates. However, the truth of the matter is that they survive nearly anywhere. You can find them in homes and other indoors spaces all over the world.
And while German cockroaches can live outdoors comfortably enough, you are far more likely to find them in indoor places. Any room that offers both food and water for German cockroaches (which translates to virtually any room in the house) is going to prove to be ideal to them. These scavengers will eat just about anything. With most infestations, all it took was leaving a few crumbs on the floor. It’s a misconception that German cockroaches can only exist in complete filth.
Another problem with German cockroaches? They trend to breed very quickly and very easily. This would explain why a German cockroach infestation can go from bad to worse in hardly any time at all. Over the course of their lives, a single German cockroach will produce up to six egg cases. Each of these egg cases will contain approximately thirty to sixty eggs! At this point, you should be able to see why these guys are such a problem.
Thankfully, when it comes to knowing how to kill German cockroaches, you have at least a few options you can try. It’s also important to remember that simply killing them won’t solve the problem over the long-term. In order to truly deal with German cockroaches, you are going to want to take preventative measures, as well.
Tips To Get Rid Of German Cockroaches
When it comes to killing German cockroaches, the first thing you should try is diatomaceous earth. This 100% natural product can work wonders against German cockroaches. They can help you to destroy them right at the source, and this product can work even in households with children and pets. Simply make sure you follow all of the directions carefully.
Diatomaceous earth is an abrasive powder that digs right into the exoskeleton of the roach. It then absorbs water from the rest of their body, making it impossible for them to continue to even function. This product also has the nice benefit of being able to work in most rooms of your house. In fact, if you’re careful, you can even use this stuff to kill cockroaches in your car.
With fewer dangerous side effects than most severe poisons, your next option for killing German cockroaches will come down to using botanical insecticides. Some of these products are still considered to be toxic, and it’s also important to remember that some of these sprays are going to be stronger than others. Make sure to do your research on the best botanical insecticide for German cockroaches. Obviously, as in our previous suggestion, it goes without saying that regardless of the specific product you purchase, make sure to follow all of the directions carefully.
A third option utilizes the introduction of natural predators into the home. Ideal for those who don’t want to work with harsh, potentially dangerous chemicals, geckos and iguanas can both be extremely useful in the home. Both animals eat cockroaches, and neither animal will represent a danger to your home. Many people love to keep them as pets.
However, obviously, this option isn’t ideal for everyone. Nonetheless, it is well worth considering. Beetles, frogs, and toads are additional German cockroach predators you can consider.
Finally, there are also bombs. These offer the fastest route to killing cockroaches. Unfortunately, these products also have a reputation for being quite toxic, which means you’ll have to clear out/prepare the room/rooms you are bombing. If you have children or pets, these bombs can also prove to potentially case health problems of varying severity. Finally, while these bombs will kill your cockroaches in the present, you aren’t really taking steps to ensure they don’t come back. Still, if you want fast, direct results, these can be useful.
While all of the tips mentioned above can kill cockroaches, the work may not be done. Many experts recommend taking preventative measures, in order to ensure the little buggers never make their return. A lot of these preventative measures are going to involve cleaning your house, and then taking steps to ensure no one in your home ever creates a situation that would be appealing to these guys.
Eliminating food and water centers for German cockroaches are two of your most important tasks. You also want to eliminate as many access points as possible, which can include small holes along the walls, floor, or even the ceiling. You don’t want to leave food or water out if possible. Trash should be disposed of quickly. Vacuuming needs to be thorough, given that it really just takes a few crumbs to bring these guys into your space.
Beyond getting rid of as many cracks and gaps in your home or apartment as possible, you will also need to make sure all of your food is stored in airtight containers.
Do I Need To Hire An Exterminator?
Obviously, if you don’t feel like making the effort to kill them on your own, you can hire an exterminator. Research your options carefully, making sure to find someone who is affordable, effective, certified, and experienced. Anything less than those things will prove to be a waste of time. Make sure the company you hire has considerable experience in your community. Don’t be afraid to ask friends and family for recommendations.
Remember: We’re talking about such a common pest, it’s more likely than not that your friends and/or family have their own experiences and suggestions.
However, you don’t inherently need to hire an exterminator. Using the tips mentioned above, you can handle a great many degrees of infestation on your own. Nonetheless, if the problem becomes more than you can handle, then you will definitely want to call in the experts. Afterwards, talk to your exterminator about preventative measures you can take.
Despite the name, experts actually believe the German cockroach originated in Southeast Asia. One theory to explain how they traveled involves Marco Polo. Regardless of what actually happened, there is no question that German cockroaches are a global problem. We’re not going to be able to eliminate all of them anytime soon. Shared plumbing and decaying structures makes it easy to find them in apartments. They also don’t need a lot to get into a home either, or even a place of business!
One of the most annoying things about German cockroaches is how easily they can move from one location to another. You don’t have to be particularly filthy to find yourself dealing with these pests. All it takes is one cockroach getting in through a crack in the kitchen. German cockroaches also love to travel in boxes, or even in clothing. One cockroach. One egg. That is all it takes to find yourself dealing with an infestation six months later. Even a few crumbs will give the creatures enough motivation to stay and breed like crazy.
None of this is meant to alarm or depress you. It’s just important to have an awareness of these pests at all times. Taking preventative measures now can go a long way towards preventing a future infestation. Also, know that the sooner you deal with a roach infestation, the easier it is going to be to actually accomplish that task. Since cockroaches are nocturnal creatures, finding them early on can be a challenge. Set out a roach trap if you’re unsure. If you catch one, then there is a good chance that you’re dealing with some sort of infestations. While German cockroaches can travel solo, they generally prefer to live in colonies.
But with the suggestions mentioned above, combined with preventative measures, you shouldn’t have any significant problems.
Again, while German cockroaches do not pose a physical threat to your wellbeing, it is important to remember that they also have a considerable potential to carry diseases and bacteria. If you see any in your home, take steps to deal with the situation immediately.