The American cockroach is also called the “palmetto bug.” Despite its name, this variety of cockroach is not native to North America. Instead, it was most likely introduced via ships from Africa or Asia. Today, the American cockroach is found all over the world. During summer months, they’re found outdoors in yards and alleys.
In the US, the American cockroach is the most common roach species found in city sewer systems. They enter structures by sneaking in on transported materials, coming up from the sewer systems via drains, or occasionally migrating from other structures or dumps during warm weather. Although they feed on many kinds of food, they show a particular fondness for fermenting and starchy foods.
Female American cockroaches protect their egg capsules by depositing or gluing them to suitable surfaces. Usually, these surfaces are in cracks or crevices in environments with high relative humidity and plenty of food. On the average, females produce around 9-10 egg capsules in a lifetime. Each capsule contains 14 to 16 eggs. Offspring developmental time is greatly influenced by temperature. In warm environments, roaches grow from eggs to adults in as few as 6 months. In colder environments, the process could take up to two years. While developing into adults, roaches molt 10 to 13 times.
Adult American cockroaches could live for only 3 months or up to 2 years, depending on their habitat. Although American cockroaches are found in residences, they are much more common in large commercial buildings. These roaches are a serious problem for restaurants, bakeries, grocery stores, food processing plants, hospitals, and other facilities like them. Inside commercial structures, American cockroaches infest food storage and preparation areas, basements, and steam tunnels.
CONTROL AND PREVENTION
Exercising good sanitation practices and performing thorough pest-proofing around buildings helps make survival difficult for American cockroaches. Control humidity, seal off access points, deny roaches cover and shelter, and restrict their access to garbage.
After dealing with an infestation, make sure you remove any containers you were storing in a roach-infested area. Thoroughly examine and clean these containers before you put them back where they were. We know how American cockroaches work, which means we know how to kick them out.
American cockroach adults measure 1 3/8 to 2" long. Their bodies are a uniform reddish-brown color. American cockroaches have a pale, sub-marginal, mask-like pattern on their pronotal shield (on their backs, behind their heads). Both sexes have wings and can fly. American cockroaches fly only short distances in the North. They fly more frequently and greater distances in the South.
Early instar nymphs are uniformly grayish-brown on top and underneath. Later instars are reddish-brown. American cockroach egg capsules (or ootheca) are kidney bean shaped, brown or black, and about 3/8" long.
Plunkett’s Pest Control specialists are ready to control, prevent, and wipe out American cockroaches. We will:
- Seek out their nests in buildings, tunnels, and sewers.
- Remove them using pest vacuum cleaners.
- Trap them using food lure sticky monitors.
- Strategically use insecticide baits and dusts.
If you have an American cockroach infestation in your home or business, Plunkett’s is the best service to call.