The cockroach is one of the most hated pests in the world, and also presents a range of health risks to animals and humans alike.
As one of the world’s most ancient bugs, the cockroach is virtually indestructible. The cockroach is actually closely related to the termite. The world’s largest cockroach species can grow almost to a scary 12 cm, while the tiniest measure not more than a few millimetres. Different cockroach species dominate different areas. In New Zealand, we have approximately 400 cockroach species, however, only about 6 species are considered serious pests of urban households and businesses. There are the native species, which are often larger than the pest species, move considerably slower than the pest species, and do not require treatment. These native species of cockroaches are an important part of our unique bio-diverse ecosystem and should be left alone.
The different kinds of pest cockroaches in New Zealand include:
- American cockroach
- Brown-banded cockroach
- Cockroach (Common)
- Oriental cockroach
- Smokey Brown cockroach
Where do cockroaches live?
They thrive in warm, moist, dark areas, situated close to food sources. They reproduce at frightening speeds and can thrive in temperatures as high as 40+ degrees Celcius, or as cold as -5 degrees Celcius.
When are cockroaches most active?
Although cockroaches eat whatever they can get their feelers on, they usually go into hiding in the daytime, which can make it difficult to know when your home is infested. Cockroaches often enter our homes via our groceries and goods we’ve imported in from elsewhere. They then search for the bathroom or kitchen, and from there they travel all over the house via electrical wiring and pipes.
Do I need professional cockroach control?
A female German cockroach lays an egg case, or ootheca, about three to five weeks after fertilisation takes place. A single egg case contains up to 50 nymphs (or baby roaches) that can grow to cause panic or anxiety for homeowners. Living in a cockroach-infested home can be hazardous to one’s health, as they spread diseases and also contaminate food and living spaces with their faeces and foul-smelling secretions. Cockroach sprays can be effective, but is only a short term solution. Over time, the money spent on sprays will eventually stack up. Traps are also effective, but only if you have a thorough knowledge of cockroach habit and patterns. Our technicians are professionally trained in cockroach pest control and have the experience to fully understand the typical behaviours of pest cockroaches.
Tips for treating a home with cockroaches:
- Keep all areas clean at all times and remove any stray objects.
- Get rid of or securely cover pet food after your pets are done with their meals.
- Vacuum the area thoroughly, paying attention to cracks, crevices and hard to get at spots. Start at one end of the area and then continue on to the other to ensure no sections are missed.
- Apply a cleansing agent to floors before wiping dry.
- After vacuuming, take the vacuum bag out, seal it in a plastic bag and then discard it in the garbage bin which should have a tightly closing lid.
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