Cockroaches are one of the most commonly noted household pest insects. They feed on human and pet food, and can leave an offensive odor.They can also passively transport microbes on their body surfaces including those that are potentially dangerous to humans, particularly in environments such as hospitals. Cockroaches have been shown to be linked with allergic reactions in humans. One of the proteins that triggers allergic reactions has been identified as tropomyosin. These allergens have also been found to be linked to asthma.
General preventive measures against household pests and Cockroach Infestation include keeping all food stored away in sealed containers, using garbage cans with tight lids, frequent cleaning in the kitchen, and regular vacuuming. Any water leaks, such as dripping taps, should also be repaired. It is also helpful to seal off any entry points, such as holes around baseboards, between kitchen cabinets, pipes, doors, and windows with some steel wool or copper mesh and some cement, putty or silicone caulk.
Diatomaceous earth applied as a fine powder works very well to eliminate cockroaches as long as it remains in place and dry.Diatomaceous earth is harmless to humans and feels like talcum powder. Most insects, including bed bugs, are vulnerable to it.
Why is it tough to get rid of cockroaches?
Some cockroaches have been known to live up to three months without food and a month without water. Frequently living outdoors, although preferring warm climates and considered “cold intolerant”, they are resilient enough to survive occasional freezing temperatures. This makes them difficult to eradicate once they have infested an area.
Of the numerous parasites and predators of cockroaches, few have proven to be highly effective for biological control of pest species. Wasps in the family Evaniidae are perhaps the most effective insect predators, as they attack the egg cases, and wasps in the family Ampulicidae are predators on adult and nymphal cockroaches (e.g., Ampulex compressa). The house centipede is probably the most effective control agent of cockroaches, though many homeowners find the centipedes themselves objectionable.