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German Cockroaches

Insect Control: How to Get Rid of Cockroaches

german cockroach
  • Bait and dust. If the infestation is determined to be severe, an initial “clean out” treatment may be required.
  • Baiting is the safest and most effective method of controlling a cockroach infestation. However, to effectively control cockroach infestations, several baits must be set out and placed correctly
  • Baits should be placed in harbourage and foraging sites or close to other points of entry
  • Though store-bought and or home remedies can be useful for short-term use, the most effective way to consistently rid your home of a cockroach infestation is to hire a trained pest control professional.

How to Identify a German Cockroach Infestation

  • Size: 1.1 to 1.6 cm
  • Colour: Ranges from tan to black, with parallel lines on its back

German cockroaches prefer to live in warm, humid places close to food and moisture sources. They are frequently found in residential and commercial kitchen environments, and bathrooms, so these are the two most likely places for an infestation to occur.

You are likely to find droppings, mall, dark, “pepper-like” material, in these areas. There may also be fecal staining, which appears as dark spots or smears in the corners of rooms, along the tops of doors or around small cracks and openings into walls.

When German cockroach populations are present in large numbers, it may be possible to detect a mild, somewhat “musty” odour.

How to Prevent a German Cockroach Infestation

  • Remove all food and unnecessary water sources
  • Seal all cracks and crevices where they may enter
  • Vacuum and remove shelter areas such as cardboard and paper

To be effective, control measures must be comprehensive, sustained, and systematic; survival of just a few eggs is quite enough to regenerate a nearly exterminated pest population within a few generations, and recolonization from surrounding populations often is very rapid, too.

Possible Health Concerns

  • Cockroaches can contaminate food and spread disease by walking over, and excreting on, food or food prep locations after having travelled through garbage
  • People with asthma may have a reaction to their droppings

About German Cockroaches

The German cockroach (Blattella germanica) is a small species of cockroach. Although it has wings, it can barely fly, although it may glide when disturbed. 

It is one of the few species of cockroaches that are domestic pests. Its short reproductive cycle, ability to hide, omnivorous diet, and resistance to come chemical pesticides make it a very challenging infestation.

German cockroaches thrive in urban areas. They prefer temperatures between 15–35 °C although, in cold climates, they are attracted to human dwellings because they cannot survive the severe cold.

What is the difference between an American Cockroach and a German Cockroach?

German cockroach (Left) and American cockroach (right) from above to see the differences in appearance.

The German cockroach is typically smaller than American Cockroaches. They are light brown in colour and have lines running down their body. American cockroaches are reddish in colour and that colour fades toward their back end.

Both species enjoy warm climates and do not tolerate the cold. German cockroaches tend to be found warm, moist environments such as kitchens and bathrooms. American cockroaches prefer dark moist spaces such as basements, crawl spaces, or drains.

The German Cockroach is a more common infestation in Peterborough and around the Kawarthas.