Q: Do we really have cockroaches here in our area?

A: Yes, we do indeed have cockroach problems here. Many people in the Puget Sound area are unaware of this. The problems here occur almost exclusively indoors, especially in multi-unit residential settings, as well as commercial kitchens.

The German cockroach is by far the most important species here and the most common found. It has worldwide distribution. As far as our pest control efforts against cockroaches locally, it is the German cockroach that we find nearly 100% of the time in all infestations.

Q: Are cockroaches that big of a deal?

A: Cockroaches are among the most reviled of all pests, and for good reason. For one thing, they’re just plain creepy with their behavior of living in cracks and crevices and coming out primarily at night. More significantly, though, they play an important role in disease transmission. They contaminate food with their saliva, feces and glandular secretions. They can spread a variety of diseases, but are most often implicated in the transmission of Salmonella, which causes food poisoning. They’ve also been implicated in causing allergic reactions in many people.

Q: Where do they live?

A: German cockroaches can live almost anywhere inside, but show a preference for warm and humid places. Most of the time they prefer to live in kitchens, and secondarily in bathrooms. We often find large clusters around refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, stoves and other appliances. Any crack or crevice, however, will work for them – especially if near a source of food and/or water.

Q: How does a place get infested?

A: A home or business can get them from incoming shipments such as in grocery bags, cardboard boxes and other means of shipping. They will also move from one unit to another in multi-unit housing or strip malls. Another source is via secondhand appliances such as refrigerators, televisions, microwaves, etc. They have a rapid reproductive rate, so if they aren’t dealt with fairly quickly once introduced, a low-level infestation can turn into a significant problem fast.

Q: What do they eat?

A: Anything edible and more. They will eat any food but also eat such things as soap, glue and toothpaste.

Q: How do you get rid them?

A: The most important factor in cockroach control is sanitation and inspection, followed by detail-oriented pest control efforts which includes several steps. Most infestations require multiple visits by a pest management professional (such as Whitworth Pest Solutions). For more information or advice on this pest please feel free to contact us!