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American Cockroaches: Quick facts from DKS Pest Control
DKS Pest Control - American Cockroach
American Cockroach

American Cockroach: Quick Facts

• Largest of the house-infesting roaches
• Other common names for American Cockroaches include: water bugs, Bombay canaries, palmetto bugs
• Not actually native to the Americas
• May have arrived during the 1600’s onboard ships
• Both males and females have wings and can fly short distances
• Can live without their head for up to a week

What do American Cockroaches look like?
• Typically reddish brown with a yellowish figure eight pattern on the back of the head
• Can be between 1-1/4” to 2-1/8” long
• 6 legs
• Antennae

What do American Cockroaches eat?
• Cockroaches are omnivores and will eat just about anything with nutritional value
• In the absence of humans, they will eat plants, other insects, decaying matter, animal feces, dead trees, and dead bodies
• They are especially attracted to starches, sugar, grease, meat and cheese, and other decaying food items with a strong smell
• Also able to feed on common household items such as book bindings, cardboard, toothpaste, leather, glue, paper scraps, solid soaps, starch-based paints and wallpaper, human skin flakes, and nylon clothing
• Worker ants may also feed on other insects, honeydew, and plant secretions

Four Typical Signs of an Infestation
• First, cockroaches seen fleeing from the light to dark areas
• Second, cockroaches leave behind their dropping in the dark areas in which they hide. Often their droppings can be confused with mouse dropping. A pest control specialist will be able to determine which pest you are dealing with
• Third, there may be a presence of egg capsules (8mm long and dark-colored) that can be found glued to surfaces near or around food sources, basements, laundry rooms, kitchens, behind appliances, or underneath cabinets
• Lastly, the cockroaches produce a pheromone that can have a strong musty smell

Are American Cockroaches dangerous?
• Cockroaches do have the ability to bite, but they are rarely known to do so. A bite should not be problematic unless it gets infected.

How can I prevent a Cockroach infestation?
• Barrier exclusion – seal all walls, gaps around electrical outlets and switch plates, and drains
• Maintain a clean and sanitary home
• Keep counters and floors free from clutter and crumbs
• Don’t let dishes pile up in the sink, or let spills marinate on the counter
• Store food in airtight containers
• Avoid leaving pet food in the open
• Vacuum at least once a week to eliminate food particles
• Ventilating crawl spaces to prevent moisture build-up
• Periodically run the water in spare bathrooms (et al) to make sure the U traps stay full of water

How do I get rid of Cockroaches?
• If you suspect an infestation, it is recommended that you contact a licensed pest control specialist. Please call DKS Pest Control at (724) 478-5344.