The sudden appearance of cockroaches in our homes or business premises is a cause for concern for everyone. Not only do roaches carry disease, but they may also cause allergic reactions. They are unattractive and difficult to get rid of. For these reasons, they are known to cause considerable anxiety and panic whenever they appear.
Whilst 1 cockroach does not necessarily mean an infestation, a sudden appearance of cockroaches probably will be!
Cockroaches are nocturnal animals, they come out of their hiding places to feed at night. During the day, they hide away in crevices and cracks but they ooze a characteristic odor that is easy to identify.
They also produce dark brown cylindrical droppings and they create smear marks along the floor surface as they crawl around the floor. If they have been on your premises for any length of time, you will notice shed skins of maturing cockroaches as they become adults.
The sudden appearance of cockroaches – What are the causes?
Several things can cause cockroaches to appear suddenly on any premises and it is important to know about these because this will help in getting rid of them, and keeping them away.
They require three important things to survive in any environment and these are usually central to their ability to thrive wherever they are. These are food, water, and warmth. It is worth knowing this!
Food is the biggest thing that attracts cockroaches, and maybe the reason why there is a sudden appearance! Have you changed anything about the way you store food? Do you keep food outdoors?
Any type of food, from human food, pet food, to fabrics and paper including cardboard and all forms of packaging materials, cockroaches are endowed with organs of mastication to devour them all.
The sudden appearance of these pests could be an indication of some form of laxity in the way food items are handled in the home.
It is important to ensure food containers are well covered and if possible, tightly sealed to prevent access to cockroaches. Food items such as bread, fresh fruits and vegetables should be taken off the table and stored in secure locations while food crumbs should be swept off the floor after cooking.
Dirty dishes that may contain food remnants should not be left in the sink and the bottom of dishwashers should be emptied of any food waste.
2 Garbage Containers
Garbage containers make a very comfortable habitat for cockroaches and if they do not have secure lids they may constitute a real nuisance.
Cockroaches thrive in warm and humid areas especially if such places provide them with easy access to food.
When cockroaches suddenly appear in the home, this may be a pointer to the vulnerability of your garbage containers.
Ensure that the container lids are tight-fitting and that they are regularly emptied so that the strong odor emanating from them does not attract cockroaches.
3 Paper Products
Paper items such as cardboard, newspapers and paper bags readily attract cockroaches because they easily absorb a certain type of chemical called pheromone which is emitted by cockroaches to invite other cockroaches to a particular location.
The sudden appearance of roaches could be an indication of unsecured or open bags or the presence of boxes containing groceries and other food items.
It may be time to have these items disposed of.
4 Watering Holes
Cockroaches thrive easily where they have access to water, and this does not have to be a lot either! This is why cockroaches can be found in places where there is a source of water such as drainpipes, the condensation around them, pet-water bowls, plant containers and even drip plates beneath refrigerators.
It is therefore essential that these locations (including places underneath sinks and appliances) are kept dry at all times.
Leaky pipes should be taken care of and drains should be well covered to prevent access to cockroaches.
5 Neighborhood Sources
Occasionally a neighborhood source may be the cause of their sudden appearance.
Occupants of multi-unit homes do not have control over the way their neighbors handle their own garbage. You may suddenly begin to experience the presence of cockroaches in parts of your home such as your living room where you do not eat or have any items that may be potentially attractive to pests.
Your neighbor could be the source of these cockroaches and it may be advisable to have a friendly discussion with the neighbor about the existence of the unwanted visitors and agree on a common line of action.
In addition, the installation of door guards can be useful in keeping out the pests.
6 Accidental Transportation
There is every possibility that cockroaches are accidentally transported into the home through moving boxes and such other containers, even if your home is spick and span.
Cockroaches can survive for many months in clean environments. It is advisable to clean out the area, dispose of any items that may have been infested and undertake general sanitation to eliminate the pests.
I once accidentally bought back a roach from a Florida vacation! I knew it was in the case just after my wife let out a high pitched scream as she opened it…
7 The Attic
Boxes and other items left sitting in the attic for a long time can be the reasons why there is a sudden appearance of cockroaches. Especially if it is not cleaned out regularly or the environment of the attic changes suddenly and becomes hot and humid.
A leaking roof or drain pipe may be the cause of this sudden change and the solution would be to find the source of the water and deal with it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is one roach a sign of infestation?
Just because you have seen one roach, it does not mean that you have to deal with an infestation. In does mean that you have to keep a very close eye out for any more though!
Why do I have roaches in my clean house?
Roaches are attracted to food, warmth, and protection. It does not matter how clean your house is, roaches just need to be able to get in to it. Even if you have a clean house, you still might have to deal with a sudden appearance of cockroaches!
Why do I suddenly have cockroaches?
The are 7 reasons on this page to help you understand why there has been a sudden appearance of cockraoches in your home. Are you storing more food? Is your garbage overflowing? Does your neighbor also have a problem with roaches? You should check these things out immediately.
The sudden appearance of cockroaches can be unsettling so it is vital to maintain a high level of sanitation around the home all the time.
Garbage should be impossible for a roach to access and should be taken out regularly. Appliances such as microwaves and refrigerators should be cleaned from time to time. Avoid bringing boxes or cases into your home that may have been sitting in the attic or in similar locations for a long period of time without first disinfecting them.