Catching sight of a cockroach in your house can be very disturbing. Typically, these creatures produce a scent that attracts fellow roaches to that area, which is the reason why you can find a large number of cockroaches hurdled together in a tiny space. Roaches’ feces and discarded skins are what cause allergic reactions in humans.
So how do you find a roach nest? Well, you simply have to think like a roach. Think of the factors that make it easy for the roaches to survive, such as food, water, and shelter. Roaches are fond of secluded areas that are dark, damp, and close to sources of food. That should be your first clue.
It can be frustrating running up and down to eliminate roaches when you have no clue about where they are hiding out. Moreover, finding these nests will also help you prevent further infestation. Therefore, this article will outline everything you need to know to successfully find a roach nest in your home and get rid of it.
Table of Contents
Common roach species
The four most common roach species are the German cockroach, the Brownbanded cockroach, the American cockroach, and the Oriental cockroach.
The American roach is the largest with a length of almost 2 inches, followed by the oriental roach, whose length is between 1 and 1 ¼ inches. Both the brown-banded and German roaches have lengths of about half an inch each. The German cockroach has two characteristic dark brown stripes running down the back of its thorax.
It is important to identify the different species because each has its habitat preferences. The knowledge of what species you are dealing with will help you find their hiding spots and get rid of them.
Cockroaches are very good at hiding, and do not like to be seen by predators that are interested in eating or killing them, like humans do.
If you want to understand what kind of roach problem you are dealing with, you first need to find their hiding spots and signs. All you need to know is what you are looking for and where to begin your search.
Finding their hiding spots
Needless to say, roaches like to hide in dark places that are out of reach, because they are even more afraid of us that we are of them. However, most roaches that infest homes live near food and water sources, and these are the ones you might want to hunt down.
Check the spaces behind kitchen cabinets and under the fridge. Poke around trash cans and behind pet food and water bowls. You need to also check underneath the kitchen and bathroom sinks.
Never underestimate the ability of roaches to hide themselves in very tiny out-of-reach areas. They can even squeeze through the tiniest of holes and habit in places like sink drains and gaps found beneath the floor.
Signs of roaches
Spotting a few live roaches in your house or garden is not an accurate sign of infestation. However, there can be other tell-tale signs that will be a sure sign of the problem. Some of these include shed skins, roach droppings, egg cases, dead roaches, or even musky smells coming from areas in your house. these odors are more common if the roaches are in large populations.
Cockroach dropping appear as specks of black pepper or grounded coffee. They may even appear as dar smears along near the pests’ hiding spots or along paths they use most. Egg cases are brown and have a length of about a quarter of an inch. They are also oval-shaped or rectangular. Another sign of infestation is the presence of dead roach bodies.
Therefore, you need to be on the lookout for these signs especially around areas where roaches feed and nest. Use a flashlight or small mirror to see when it’s dark in tight corners if necessary. You need to also check inside drawers and under cupboards. Setting up Sticky traps will help you to not only identify the species of roach present, but also get an idea of just how many roaches could be hiding out.
Getting rid of roach nests
At this point, evidence of infestation is just enough for you to go ahead with your pest elimination plan. You might need baits, pesticides and more preventative measures to get rid of cockroaches and ensure they don’t come back, you should know that you need more than just bug-spray. You require perseverance, strategy, and knowledge about cockroach habits and habitats, to deal with them effectively.
There are several forms of roach control products. A few of these are traps, baits, residual sprays, and perimeter treatments.
For just a few roaches, you do not need a full-blown chemical attack; this is a bit too much work for a potentially small problem. You could make do with cockroach traps, for starters. Place them strategically to help you identify the extent of your roach problem, and to find the center of it all.
Roach baits have pesticides that kill cockroaches after they have gone back into hiding, which ideally spreads the poison to other cockroaches in the nests. Combined with a residual spray that kills on contact, baits can efficiently cut down the cockroach population with little or no effort on your part.
Worried about the cockroach problem getting out of hand? The best course of action to take is to contact pest control experts and let them handle the issue themselves. Professionals will treat the house with a perimeter spray, targeting better cockroach habitats both indoors and outdoors.
Natural Cockroach Control
If you would rather use natural ways to deal with roaches, well, there are many options for those, too. One natural remedy for roaches is diatomaceous earth, which is harmless to people and pets but toxic to roaches. Sprinkle this around suspected areas of infestation to eliminate cockroaches.
Another example is mixing borax and sugar to make a natural bait and pesticide.
How to keep roaches out
You might have managed to get rid of roaches, but can you manage to keep them out of your house for good? Be a little more deliberate with your regular cleaning, even though you no longer have a roach problem. You want to ensure your house remains as roach-free as possible.
The reason cockroaches make their way into your house is because they are searching for basic needs for survival like food, water, and shelter. Sometimes your house is not necessarily dirty, but you only have what the roaches need.
Cutting off food sources would be a good place to start. Keep foods sealed in air-tight containers to prevent roaches from accessing them. Always make sure surfaces are kept clean all the time, and dishes are washed thoroughly after meals. Roaches are attracted to food remains and crumbs that you leave lying around.
Make a point of fixing faulty drains and leaking pipes and faucets, because roaches rely so much on water. Cockroaches can go for a week longer without food than they would without water. Keep your home dry, especially areas like the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room, and outdoors. Check for cracks and gaps where pipes go into the wall, and have them fixed.
You also need to clear out your outdoors and make them unsuitable for roach breeding. Sometimes, your roach problem may be due to an attractive outdoor environment, which includes warm, humid conditions. Drain puddles of water around the house.
Clear clutter from the house by rearranging disorganized items in the house, such as old boxes in the garage or basement. Clear the attic and clean it up thoroughly.
Flying cockroaches are attracted to the lights in your house at night, so if you always leave windows open, do not forget to keep them covered with screens. Simple measures like these go a long way to prevent roach infestations in the future.
It is true that one cockroach can cause an entire infestation. Some female cockroaches only need to mate once and they’ll stay pregnant and keep reproducing for the rest of their lives. Others can reproduce through parthenogenesis, a form of asexual reproduction that occurs without a mate and leads to the production of other female cockroaches, continuing the cycle. At the same time, the chances of you having only that one roach in your house are very low, because of the impeccable ability of roaches to hide. The one cockroach could be a sign of more roaches hiding away.
Discovering a dead roach may as well mean the same thing as discovering a live one, meaning the time has come for you to search the whole house for evidence of more. If indeed there are more cockroaches, you should identify how far the problem has gone. Only then should you set up baits and spray insecticides, or contact a professional pest control company.