Why do cockroaches like our homes?

You may wonder why cockroaches like our homes so much when their natural habitat is forest or desert.  Well, that’s an easy question to answer. Whilst its true that roaches are tropical and subtropical insects, the most widely known roach species – the American and German cockroaches – have simply evolved to live successfully within residential environments.

Our homes are kept constantly heated throughout the year and therefore they offer the perfect all-round temperature for cockroach survival.  Although we associate roaches with dirt and grime, they are not looking for this when they find a route into our homes.   The cockroach seeks warmth, darkness, moisture, water and some kind of food source in order to survive.  That’s why cockroaches are often found in bathrooms and kitchens or under sinks. Give the cockroach a steamy bathroom and not much else and you have a happy cockroach. You may not think there would be much to sustain a cockroach in a bathroom environment but they manage to thrive and will eat anything they can find including soap and shampoo.

With no natural insect predators or native enemies to challenge or attack them, as they would have in their natural desert or forest habitat, roaches not only get into our homes very easily but they thrive and populate quickly, especially without good cockroach control. Gaps under doors, pipework, cracks in the exterior of your house all pose no problem for the clever cockroach.  Although the adult roach can grow fairly large, it can squeeze through gaps as tiny as one-sixteenth of an inch (that’s just 0.15cm).

Roaches are incredibly successful insects and are such widespread pests because they have found a way to thrive in human environments. Cockroaches are attracted to our homes as they offer them everything they need – darkness, protection, a moist environment, constant heat, water and food sources.

We need to make our homes as unattractive to the roach as possible in order to practice good cockroach control and eradicate them.  This is a perfect time to recommend again fitting electronic pest repellers in your homes.  They simply plug into your electric sockets and pump out ultrasonic sound waves at frequencies of up to 5,000 sq. feet. The roaches in your home are bombarded with the ultrasonic sound waves in the form of loud, disorienting and unpleasant sound.  The sound ricochets off walls and solid objects and will travel along the wiring in your home to repel pests nested in walls and cracks and irritate their nervous systems.  The result is that cockroaches will do everything possible to get away from the noise leaving you to enjoy a cockroach-free existence. These ultra sound frequencies are inaudible and safe around humans, cats and dogs, meaning that your household can enjoy environmentally friendly peace and quiet while the electronic pest repellers do their work.  We recommend the Ultimate AT Pest Repeller which is available from Amazon, Good Life and all good retailers.  Try it and you will be surprised how well such a green, non-toxic product for your cockroach control really works.  There is no pest controller in the world who will want anyone to try a device like this over regular chemical cockroach control.  But ask yourself why. The pest control industry is worth tens of millions of dollars a year.  If we all had electronic pest repellers in our homes the chemical pest controller would be out of business.  Maybe when the true outcome of breathing in such high levels of toxicity in these chemicals becomes more widely known and accepted than it is today, they will be.

 

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Some Cockroach Facts You May Not Know…

WATCH THEM RUN …..Ever wondered how a cockroach almost senses you’re behind it and will always run away on approach? Well, if you’ve ever got up close to a roach you’ll notice two hairs in its back section. These two hairs have a name – Cerci. The Cerci are literally the cockroach’s built-in warning system. They can sense and detect even the slightest motion or breeze. As soon as motion is detected the cockroach knows to run – and hide.  WHAT ARE THEY LOOKING AT….A roach has ‘compound’ eyes. This means it sees all around its body, not just to the front and sides like us. These compound eyes may not give the roach the clearest vision but these eyes do have more than 2,000 individual lenses. In comparision, the human eye has just one lens. The roach’s compound eyes pick up all movements to all sides of its body which will explain how the cockroach almost always gets away.  HOW DOES IT SMELL….Well, the cockroach does not have a nose. However what it does have is 6 very fast legs. Their legs are extra sensory organs covered in little hairs which work in conjunction with the roaches antennae. It’s the antennae with gives the roach its sense of smell. The antennae help the cockroach find places to nest, feed and even other cockroaches. The male cockroach’s antennae goes one step further allowing the males to specifically sniff out female cockroaches.  The cockroach also has a secondary way to smell – with its mouth.  It’s also interesting to note at this point that whilst humans chew in an up and down motion, the cockroach mouth is designed to chew from side to side. WHAT DO THEY HEAR….Cockroaches have exceptional hearing. Their ears are not on their heads but in their knee joints. Their bodies are a counterweight which helps amplify the effect of low frequency sound. Cockroaches literally hear with their feet by sensing vibrations. A cockroach knows your home simply by sensing the sound waves of your footsteps as you approach.  Remember that as you let yourself in tonight.

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Cockroach Control is one thing – but do cockroaches do any good?

Whilst some people may only experience seeing the odd cockroach on their holidays  somewhere hot, others of course have had to learn how to control and eradicate the cockroaches living in their homes by adapting their control methods to suit their household.  Humans cannot live in homes overrun by roaches and therefore – for us – the cockroach is a pest and we have no choice but to control them in our home environment.   On this website we advocate organic green methods which have a long term affect on cockroach control and are safe around humans and animals.   So for us, cockroaches are cumbersome, feared and hated and its hard to imagine that the humble cockroach does any good at all.  However, the natural environment of a roach is not our brick built homes.  Cockroaches, like all living creatures, have evolved and adapted, but they naturally live in tropical and sub-tropical habitats such as dry arid deserts and warm damp forests.  Roaches in their natural environment play a vital role in decomposing a variety of organic matter such as leaves and animal droppings.  In addition to this role, they become food themselves for other animals and even pollinators of some plants.   They feed on an array of organic matter and make their nests within it.  It has also been reported that cockroaches eat the eggs of cotton bollworms.  Doesn’t sound very interesting yet, does it – but actually the bollworm (in the adult stage) is a moth which becomes a caterpillar which causes widespread damage to the cotton plant, an essential crop in agriculture.  So here again, the cockroach comes into its own by eliminating the eggs which in turn keeps the caterpillar population reduced, and therefore crop devastation to a minimum.  Cockroaches are a nuisance pest when they are within our homes.  However when compared to other insects, there are worse.  Mosquitos have the ability to transmit disease organisms.  Plant pests destroy crops and there are some termites that consume wood in structures which can be devastating.  Let’s not sugar-coat the fact that roaches can spread bacteria such as E.coli and Salmonella. However, take cockroaches out of our environment, and put them back into their natural tropical habitat, and the humble roach does some good.

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