Cockroaches are unsettling pests. When you flick a light on and find one clinging to your wall, or you watch with horror as one comes crawling out of your air conditioning unit, it can drive you to take quick and decisive steps to get rid of the roaches in your home. Unfortunately, many of the cockroach control strategies Merrimack residents use fall short because most people don't know how formidable these insects are. Before you can fully understand what works to get rid of cockroaches, we need to touch on this important topic.

cockroach on a table
cockroaches in kitchen

What You're Up Against

You've probably heard that cockroaches are likely to be the only creatures that will survive thermonuclear war. Avoiding the rabbit trail of pointing out that many creatures on planet earth are tolerant to high levels of radiation, we're going to get straight to what matters most: Cockroaches are tough little suckers. Not only are they tolerant to radiation, but they're also tolerant to chemicals as well. Through the centuries, this has helped cockroaches avoid our attempts to exterminate them into extinction—and you know we would have if it were possible. But, with each attempt, we only made the roaches stronger. Why? Because they can shed their skins and create new skins that are more resistant to the chemicals used to exterminate them. Not only this, but they can also share this chemical resistance with their offspring. If you don't know this, you might find yourself directly spraying a roach with a toxic chemical, only to watch it crawl away, completely unaffected.

This ability to adapt goes beyond the shedding of skin. Some cockroach species have genetically altered their taste receptors. It has been found that certain German cockroaches will no longer eat sweet cockroach baits. These baits, which used to be highly desirable, are no longer attractive to them. Pest control professionals are aware of the adaptive potential of cockroaches and use a mixture of products and methods to achieve control.

What You Can Do To Get Rid Of Cockroaches

There is no doubt that cockroaches are tough to exterminate, but you might not have to exterminate the roaches in your home to get rid of them. Here are a few all-natural cockroach prevention tips.

Sanitation — Some roaches won't live with you if your home is too clean. They're drawn to bacteria and the scent of decay. The Oriental cockroach is an example of this kind of roach. (These are the gross black ones.) If you clean and deep clean your home, you can resist these roaches. If you want to get rid of them fully, your sanitation efforts must include the outside of your home. Disinfect your trash bins, move compost away from your exterior, and take steps to remove anything else that is rotting.

Cleaning — While this could be placed in sanitation, it deserves its own category. There are many things in your home that cockroaches consider to be food. If you clean these up, you can remove these food sources. Dead skin, hair, and feces in your bathroom are an example of cockroach food sources. Your bathroom is a humid space that is attractive to cockroaches. The last thing you want is for those roaches to find a bite to eat. Keep in mind that they can also subsist on toothpaste. It is bizarre but true. Be sure to keep the cap on your toothpaste and store your toothbrushes in protective containers.

Food — Cockroaches don't just eat dead skin, hair, feces, and items made of cellulose; they'll also eat the foods you eat. It would be best if you considered anything in your home that could give cockroaches a bite to eat, such as food on dirty dishes, pantry foods that are not kept in sealed containers, and pet food you put down on the floor. Keep food protected. This will make your home less habitable for cockroaches.

Moisture — Some roaches won't want to live with you if it is too dry in your home. Not only does moisture provide a drink for the pest roaches in your home, but it is also a catalyst for roaches to feed on the wallpaper, books, newspapers, and other items that contain cellulose. The more moist these items are, the easier they are for cockroaches to munch on. You can reduce moisture by fixing leaks, installing dehumidifiers, and taking advantage of the fan in your bathroom if you have one.

Exclusions — Once your home has been made roach-unfriendly, it is time to seal any entry points you can find in your exterior walls. This won't work to seal roaches out 100 percent, but it can deter them.

Habitat Modification — Reduce moisture, shaded hiding places, and organic debris around your home. This will work to reduce cockroach activity and make it less likely that roaches will find any entry points you've missed.

When You Need Cockroach Control In Merrimac, Massachusetts

Remember that the team here at Freedom Pest Control is always available to assist you with cockroach treatments, cockroach maintenance, and ongoing perimeter pest control to help keep cockroaches out of your Merrimack home. Connect with us today and schedule a pest inspection to get started. 


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