You can help prevent cockroaches from coming into your home by inspecting all incoming food products, all boxes, and any used furniture or appliances for the presence of cockroaches or their egg capsules. Do not store paper bags anywhere in the kitchen. Seal any holes or crevices around plumbing under sinks and behind toilets. Regularly vacuum and clean floors under the kitchen appliances. Keep all of your drains closed at night to prevent them from coming up from the sewer system.
There are a number of good baits available for controlling cockroaches. You can put equal amounts of baking soda and sugar out in flat containers, and they will take it. There is a very good roach bait available commercially. It is Niban Bait and it is made from boric acid. It would probably be easier to get this product and use it if you are in an area where roaches are very common. You can’t buy Niban in stores, but it is available online. When using Niban, put it under and behind appliances, around hot water heaters, inside lower cabinets, in the garage and other places roaches will hide.
One of the best ways to control cockroaches outside is to place several pie pans filled with beer around your home. Roaches love beer and you will find many dead roaches in the pans in the morning. And they do not check IDs. You can also put some duct tape down, sticky side up, in the house or garage where it won’t get stepped on. Roaches are attracted to the glue and will get stuck on the tape. It will also catch crickets.
American cockroaches (Blattidae – Periplaneta americana)
This common roach feeds on a wide variety of plant and animal material and it is commonly found in sewer systems. It will come up the drains at night and enter the living space of a home. It also likes the homes that have crawl spaces under them. In some parts of the country, particularly the southeast, they frequently live outside. The is the largest of the home-infesting roaches in the country. It will reach a little over 1 ½ inches in length. It is a dark brown with yellowish band around its thorax (section behind head).
One beneficial aspect of this cockroach is that it will feed on bed bugs. Of course, most people don’t want roaches in their bed feeding on the bed bugs that are feeding on the humans. Niban Bait is a very good commercial bait that works well on controlling these insects. American roaches are called “Palmetto Bugs” in Florida. They can fly unlike most roaches.
Oriental cockroaches (Blattidae – Blatta orientalis)
Oriental cockroaches or “waterbugs” are found throughout the United States but they aren’t seen very often in the southeastern states. They are about an inch long. The female is all black and the male has two brown wing tips, but it cannot fly. These roaches are common in sewer systems and will come up the drains into the homes. They are also common underground debris outside and love stacks of firewood. These roaches will readily take Niban Bait as well as the homemade baits discussed above and the love beer.
German cockroaches (Blatellidae – Blatella germanica)
The German cockroach is the most prolific of the roaches. It is small, dark brown with two distinct black stripes on its thorax. It will feed on almost anything edible and a lot of things we wouldn’t consider edible. They go from egg to adult in as little as 45 days and, if left unchecked, can severely infest a home or business. Usually, they are most commonly found in kitchens and bathrooms. When you are controlling German roaches, you should use German Roach Pheromone Traps. The traps will attract and catch the roaches. They are available online. They also take Niban Bait.
There is a lot more information about almost all other pests in my book, “Safe and Effective Pest Management is VITAL for the Welfare of our Children and the Environment.” If you want a copy, email me at email@example.com. It is only available in PDF format via email. It is $10 for a copy.