If like me you hate the things, keep reading...

Some good advice here to try and reduce the risk of meeting one or two (or even a whole lot more) in your house or appartment



Check all your rooms:

Bathrooms: Moisture is the lure here. Look behind the bath, shower, sinks and toilet, and around pipes.

Underbuild: Cockroaches frequent basements, coming in from sewers and landfills. Inspect inside floor drains. Check the foundation for cracks.

Other rooms: Vacuum drapes and furniture, especially under cushions and in crevices. Empty and clean bookshelves, and shake out the books. Check closets, desks, clocks, radios, stereos, computers and televisions – wherever it’s warm and dark.

Kitchen: You are most likely to find cockroaches here. Look on the floor underneath and behind sinks, stoves and other appliances. Peer at the back of, and along the interior frame of cabinets and drawers, looking into any spaces. Inspect corners, especially those under tables and chairs. Examine the edges of ceilings, especially above cooking and dishwashing areas. Check the back of the refrigerator and the door seals.

This inspection will reveal the "hot spots," the places of greatest cockroach activity. Focus on these areas:


Eliminate snacks for the cockroach - Kitchens provide ideal habitats for cockroaches. Concentrate on making your kitchen uninviting to these unwelcome visitors. Adopt a strict hygiene policy. Tolerate no grease, crumbs, grunge or clutter anywhere.

Clean all surfaces, especially between counters and appliances. Scrub underneath and behind refrigerators and stoves (floor and walls). Remember the corners, drawers, cabinets and fixtures. Store all food, including pet food, in tightly sealed containers. Don’t leave bowls of pet food on the floor overnight. Food waste must also be carefully guarded. Keep your refuse, compost and recyclables in tightly sealed containers. Empty and clean them daily, preferably in the evening, because cockroaches are most active at night.

Repair damaged refrigerator door seals. If the insulation’s infested, use a bait or call a professional.

Wipe up cockroach faeces with a disposable cloth. Faeces contain a pheromone that attracts roaches; newly hatched roaches feed on the faeces of older roaches. You didn’t want to know that did you?

Disposing of cockroaches 

My neighbour tells me not to stamp on a cockroach – you may just carry their eggs on your shoe into your home, they will hatch – and you know the rest of the story! I am also told that cats love to eat them, but that the eggs pass through the cat and may later hatch.

Experts tell me that to quickly reduce cockroach populations, vacuum them with the hose attachment, preferably using a machine equipped with a HEPA filter, and a great advert for all those lovely, colorful Dysons! As soon as you’re done, remove the vacuum bag and quickly seal it inside another bag, and then dispose of both bags.

Insecticide baits are highly effective and are among the more environmentally sensitive controls. Be patient; it will take about two weeks to see results. These baits act as a food source, so make sure no other food is available – only hungry cockroaches will be attracted to them. Some cockroaches will eat the bait directly, while others will be poisoned after feeding on those roaches or their faeces.

Don’t use pesticides or cleaning compounds near the baits, because they may repel the cockroaches. Set the baits in the "hot spots," close to the cockroaches’ shelter, or directly within their travel paths – not out in the open. Placement is crucial. Position bait stations next to walls and flush in corners, near sewer or floor drains or in damp spaces. Cockroaches love heat and damp so in the swimming pool pump housing may be another good place to set a trap.

Finally, my neighbour told me today that if we had a nuclear explosion, cockroaches would be the only living thing to survive. I am not sure if this is based upon scientific fact, but it does give some food for thought!

american cockroach illustration 1376x1147

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