Cockroach is one of the most common urban pests found in homes, restaurants, hospitals, warehouses, offices and other structures that have food handling areas. Cockroaches, especially species that come in contact with human feces like American cockroach may transmit bacteria responsible for food poisoning, such as salmonella and viral hepatitis organisms. In apartments and other large buildings, they readily migrate from one place to another along water pipes. Cockroaches walk everywhere in facility, drops feces, and spoil food. They shed their skins as they grow, and also produce unpleasant smells when their numbers become large. Prolonged exposure and inhaling allergies from their skins and feces can cause allergies and asthma especially in Children.
Cockroaches are nocturnal. They hide dark and warm areas, and prefer narrow spaces where surfaces touch them on top and bottom. Cockroaches tend to congregate in corners and generally travel along the edge of walls or other surfaces.
Cockroach species; It is important to identify the species of Cockroaches because every species has a peculiar behavior and habits that influence the type of management methods to be used and locations where control efforts be emphasized.
There are 4 kinds of cockroaches commonly found inside structures in India.
German Cockroach (Blattella germanica)
The German cockroach is most common indoor species, especially in multiple family dwellings. They are pest in homes, schools, hospitals, restaurants and even become pests on ships and planes. In buildings these are usually found in kitchens, bathrooms, food preparation areas with warm and humid atmosphere. The adults are comparatively small (about ½ inch long) tan in color and often occur in large numbers. German cockroaches have the highest reproductive potential .There are two dark stripes on the anterior dorsal portion of the thorax. They have pads on legs to run up on smooth surfaces with ease above floor level.
American Cockroach (Periplaneta americana)
The American Cockroach is reddish-brown and is the largest of common species (about 1-1/2 inch in length at maturity). It is shiny reddish to chocolate brown in color and has a pale brown or yellowish border on the upper surface of the pronotum. It is found more often in food establishments, although houses and apartments near such establishments frequently become infested. They are mostly found in dark and moist areas of basements and also in sewer systems. They confine their foraging mostly to the ground floors of the buildings. Both sexes have well developed wings but those of the males extend beyond the abdomen. The adults can survive 3 months without food but only about a month without water.
Brown Banded Cockroach (Supella longipalpa)
The Brown-banded cockroaches are light brown in color and have two lighter transverse bands running horizontally in the base of the wings and abdomen. They resemble German cockroach in size, but needs less water than German, mostly seen high on walls in living rooms and bed rooms. These cockroaches infest animal rearing facilities, and are pests in institutional kitchen, offices and hospitals.
Oriental Cockroach (Blatta orientalis)
Oriental cockroach lives in colonies in dark, damp places. Usual places where they occur include indoor and outdoor drains, basements and damp areas. They are large (about 1 inch in length) and shiny black or very dark brown in color. The female has small rudimentary wings, while male has fully developed wings, but are shorter than the body. They are usually located at or below ground level indoors. They are less likely found on walls or in upper floors of the buildings.
SOME INTERESTING FACTS
• German cockroaches and young ones can produce 3,00,000 or more roaches in one year.
• American roaches and her young ones can produce only 800 roaches in one year.
• Cockroaches can run up to 3 miles per hour
• Most species can hold breath for 30-35 minutes
• Roaches can live for an entire week without head.
• Roaches can go without food for 42 days but cannot go without water for 12 days.
WHAT YOU CAN DO?
One can avoid cockroach infestation in home by adopting following precautions :
• Check for cockroaches before bringing home containers such as paper bags from stores.
• Seal holes or crevices around walls, doors especially in kitchen.
• Clean the floors frequently. Wash dishes promptly after meals or at least cover them with soapy water.
• Cover food containers, pet food containers and garbage containers
• Fix water leaks in kitchen and common areas.
INTEGRATED COCKROACH MANAGEMENT SERVICE
• Sanitation and exclusion
• Using Sticky Traps : Used to monitor cockroach spp. and population.
• Using Gel Baits : The gel is applied at their most suspected outlets like wall crack and crevices, holes.
• Using Boric Acid
• Using Non-repellent and Repellent Reduced Risk Chemicals.
Cockroach Contract Services
Annual maintenance Contract: The contract provides you three services per year, once every four months for residential accounts. However for commercial facilities, frequency is decided on the basis of inspection.
Single Service Contract: One time service is executed, but no warranty is given.