Everyone has a sound, smell, or sight that triggers a visceral reaction. Perhaps the sound of fingernails scratching down a chalkboard sends shivers down your spine. Or, the aroma of a teenage boy's bedroom makes you run for cover. It could be that brussels sprouts make you bristle and turn up your nose. Different things affect different people, but one pest that makes everyone jump back in disgust is cockroaches.
Stumbling into the bathroom in the middle of the night, turning on the light, and being greeted by cockroaches scurrying across the floor will cause you to jump back in horror. Opening the pantry to get food and seeing cockroaches dart behind canned goods will make you feel sick. Watching as a cockroach runs out from underneath the furniture when guests visit will make you want to hide out of embarrassment.
End these horrifying experiences in your house by securing the best pest control in Longview from Gecko Pest Control. For over 20 years, we have removed cockroaches from homes and ended the nightmares these filthy creatures create for homeowners. A certified entomologist trains our technicians, and they have passed a rigorous pest management course from Purdue University. In other words, our technicians know how to get rid of cockroaches.
We value and invest in our local community through volunteer work, financial donations, and education. In this brief article, we will teach you about cockroaches and what you can do if you find a cockroach in your house.
How To Identify A Cockroach
Cockroaches are insects, and animals in the Insecta class have the following features: compound eyes, two antennae, three pairs of legs, and an exoskeleton encapsulating a body consisting of the head, prothorax, and a segmented abdomen. Cockroaches have overlapping wings, but not all cockroaches can fly.
In the scientific classification system, cockroaches are in the Blattodea order; Blatta is Latin describing an insect that spurns the light. Since cockroaches work in the dark, you may not see them in your home except when turning on the light late at night or moving furniture and exposing their hiding place. Cockroaches may lurk in the darkness and hide in the recesses of your Longview home, but there are signs of their presence.
To confirm cockroaches in your Longview home, look for these signs:
- Droppings: Cockroaches constantly defecate and leave behind jagged-edged droppings. American, oriental, and smokey brown cockroaches produce cylindrical feces the size of a grain of rice; German and brown-banded cockroaches deliver pepper-like droppings the size of coffee grounds. Sometimes, people confuse the cylindrical droppings of some cockroaches with mouse droppings, but mouse droppings are rod-shaped with pointed ends.
- Stains: Cockroach droppings stain the top of doors, corners, and around cracks in walls.
- Capsules: Female cockroaches do not lay individual eggs; instead, they produce egg capsules (ootheca) containing eggs. The amount of eggs in the ridged purse-shaped containers depends on the cockroach species. For example, a German cockroach capsule has about 48 eggs, an American and oriental has about 16 per capsule, and the brown-banded cockroach has about 10 to 16 eggs in a pill-like structure. A female cockroach will produce several oothecae during its lifetime. The capsules containing the cockroach eggs in your home are glued to surfaces near food sources by the mouth secretions of the roaches.
- Skins: Like other insects, the cockroach has its skeleton outside its body, known as an exoskeleton. A cockroach must shed (molt) its exoskeleton to progress to the next growth stage leaving behind a dark-colored shell. The presence of skins in dark areas of the house is a sign of infestation.
- Musty odor: Male cockroaches convey seductive messages through pheromones in their urine. This chemical is an invitation to female cockroaches to mate with them. A stale smell is present in areas where a large infestation is present.
- Live cockroaches: Cockroaches are nocturnal insects that forage while you sleep; however, they do not always make it back to their hiding location before your awake, or you may stumble on them in the middle of the night or early in the morning. Due to their high reproduction rate, the sight of one cockroach indicates that many more are likely to be present.
If you see these infestation signs, you need cockroach control for your Longview home from Gecko Pest Control.
Why It's Dangerous To Have Roaches In The House
Why do we have a visceral reaction to cockroaches? Why do we run to kill a cockroach as soon as we see it in our home? We can't stand cockroaches in our house, and subconsciously we believe they are dangerous, but why and how are they harmful?
Cockroaches forage in sewers, drains, garbage disposals, trash heaps, and animal feces ripe with bacteria, viruses, and parasitic worms. Cockroaches have spines on their legs that attract pathogens lying on the polluted surface of these areas. When the cockroaches travel through your Longview home, the organisms fall from the spines onto cooking, eating, and storage surfaces and contaminate them.
Cockroaches spread thirty-three bacteria, six parasitic worms, and other pathogens onto surfaces in the home. These organisms cause salmonellosis, E. coli infections, typhoid fever, cholera, gastroenteritis, dysentery, listeriosis, giardia, and other illnesses.
When cockroaches forage in filthy areas, they ingest disease-causing organisms later transferred through feces and saliva. Cockroaches chew on plastic wrappers, bags, and paper food storage containers using their mandibles and leave saliva on the packaging or the food product. When a human consumes a product contaminated by cockroach saliva, those pathogens may transfer to the person. The fecal matter deposited in kitchen draws, cabinets, exposed food, and surfaces also contains the disease-causing organisms previously ingested by the cockroach.
Protein in the skin and droppings are another reason cockroaches are dangerous in your Longview home. The protein from cockroaches causes a runny nose, red, coughing, sneezing, irritated eyes, and itching in some people. The National Pest Management Association estimates that 63% to 98% of homes contain cockroach proteins shed from their body. These proteins can also trigger shortness of breath, a tight chest, wheezing, and other asthmatic conditions.
Gecko Pest Control provides home pest control in Longview to protect homeowners from the dangers of cockroaches.
How To Remove Factors That Attract Cockroaches
It is shocking when you see a cockroach in your house, and the natural question is, "Why are there cockroaches in my house?" Let's explore the reasons why cockroaches enter Longview homes.
Cockroaches enter homes searching for a warm location. Except for the oriental cockroach that prefers cooler temperatures, these pests do not thrive in cold conditions but like temperatures above 70℉ and, in the case of brown-banded cockroaches, over 80℉. When the temperature drops, and if there are cockroaches in your yard, they can sense the warmer air wafting from the house and will seek to enter the structure.
If a cockroach finds an entry point into your home, it begins to search for food. Cockroaches prefer meats, sweets, starches, and fatty foods, but they will eat nuts, seeds, and all other human foods. They will also consume paper, glue, fingernails, feces, and anything else that was once a part of a living organism. Dog food, open trash cans, garbage disposals, plates in sinks, and crumbs on the floor or shelves in the kitchen and pantry are food sources for cockroaches.
Like all living creatures, cockroaches need water to survive. Most cockroach species hide in crawl spaces, attics, laundry rooms, under sinks, tubs, near leaking faucets, water heaters, and other areas with high moisture content. Brown-banded cockroaches are the exception. This species dwells in low-moisture environments on top of kitchen cabinets, inside electrical outlets, and near ceilings.
When a cockroach has found a home containing warmth, food, and water, the last necessity is shelter. Cockroaches do not struggle with this need because they can hide in cracks, wall voids, dark corners, underneath furniture, and other dimly-lit areas. They also survive in crawlspaces, garages, attics, and basements of houses.
Suggestions to remove these factors are:
- Cover all trash cans inside and outside the house
- Vacuum the house regularly
- Store all food in air-tight containers
- Remove pet food at night
- Wipe down cooking and eating surfaces after meals
- Seal cracks and entry points into the home
When these elements are present, the cockroaches will begin rapidly reproducing. For example, just a few German cockroaches can produce up to 10,000 descendants in one year. When you see cockroaches in your house, you need Gecko Pest Control to eliminate the roaches in your home.
The Best Way To Get Rid Of Cockroaches In Your Home
Gecko Pest Control is the solution to your cockroach infestation. When you schedule an inspection, a highly-trained service professional will thoroughly inspect your Longview home to determine entry points, attractants, and hot spot locations.
Our technicians will use their knowledge to determine the cockroach species invading your house based on the signs left behind. With this information, the technician will create a custom plan targeting the cockroach species and their nesting areas to eliminate not only existing cockroaches but future generations. Upon approval, we will treat your home using EPA-approved treatment products designed to keep pets and family members safe while effectively killing the cockroaches in your home. Contact us today to learn more and to schedule an inspection.
What Gecko Pest Control Customers Are Saying
"Love this company. Very professional. All there employees are professional, knowledgeable, helpful and just darn nice!"
"I just wanted to say that y’all have some of the best and kind hearted employees working for Gecko. Landen came out today and went above and beyond to represent the company and who he is as a person. I am very thankful for his hospitality and professionalism. Great team you have!! Proud to be a Gecko customer."
"Ryan did a very thorough job in spraying around the house. He walked the exterior of the house with me to learn my specific needs. He was even very helpful to help move the humming bird feeders before this initial spray. Daren was also very informative I’m explaining the services. They were able to come out the day I called and were prompt arriving."