|Color||Light brown in color with yellow-brown stripes across the abdomen.|
|Size||Adults are 1/2″ long.|
|Appearance||The adult males have fully developed wings. The adult females are shorter and stouter than the males and their wings do not cover the entire abdomen. Both adults and nymphs can be distinguished by the two yellow-brown, broad bands across the body at the base of the abdomen and at mid-abdomen.|
They eat glue and paste as well as materials with high starch contents or color dyes, so they are often found nibbling on stamps, envelopes, books and wallpaper. They will also eat other pantry items.
Brownbanded cockroaches mostly stay on the ground, but may fly in very warm climates. Primarily active at night, they prefer warm, humid environments in ceilings, attics, and inside and around appliance motors. Because of their lower water needs, they can be found in any room, including kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, and closets.
The female cockroach lays eggs in a protective capsule which contains an average of 13 eggs. After carrying the capsule around on her abdomen for about 30 hours, the female deposits the egg capsule to a wall, ceiling or protected area. The egg stage of the cockroach life cycle lasts from 37 to 103 days. The nymph stage ranges from 8 to 31 weeks and the adults live 13 to 45 weeks. In her lifetime, a female produces about 600 young.
Signs of Infestation
- May notice a foul odor given off by large infestations. In fact, experienced pest control professionals can frequently smell an infestation before seeing any physical evidence of one.
- Look for excrement, skin casts and empty egg capsules in crevices close to the ground.
- Examine basements, crawlspaces, sinks, and bathtubs for leaky pipes and fecal smears.
- Check electrical areas, boiler rooms, and kitchens for live cockroaches, skin casts and feces.
The odorous secretions given off by the insects contaminate any food supply from which the insect feeds.
The insect’s excrement and skin casings contain allergens which may cause affected individuals to contract skin rashes, experience congestion and become watery-eyed and sneezy. Children remain most susceptible to the asthmatic effects of cockroach allergens.
Cockroaches contribute to the development and irritation of asthma.
Lastly, as many species of cockroaches prefer warm and dry or moist environments, the insects may cause damage to machines or piping.
Furthermore, the pests emit secretions that produce an unpleasant, lingering odor and can compromise the taste of food.
Prevention & Control
To prevent a cockroach infestation, home and business owners must eliminate sources of food and moisture. Simply practicing good sanitation habits can reduce or eliminate some of the most common food sources for cockroaches such as:
- Cleaning up spills
- Sweeping up crumbs and storing food in airtight containers
- Washing dirty dishes. Do not leave dishes overnight
- Emptying the trash daily
- Vacuum often
Other prevention tips involve:
- Elimination of potential access points by caulking cracks and crevices
- Sealing the openings around pipes
- Keep these areas properly ventilated to remove moisture
- Inspecting incoming packages for cockroaches prior to bringing the items inside
While sprays and foggers are readily available at many retailers, they may actually make the infestation worse by causing the insects to scatter rather than die. Implementing baits often requires specialized equipment along with knowledge of cockroach behavior and tendencies. Licensed pest control professionals have access to the quickest and most effective methods of cockroach removal.
If a brownbanded cockroach infestation occurs, count on a professional pest management service to take care of the problem knowledgeably and successfully.