Cockroaches are one of the world’s oldest and most despised insects. These filthy creatures have lived alongside humans for millennia, inhabiting our sewers and feasting on our food waste. They are, therefore, one of the most common household pests in the world and can be found invading homes and businesses around the globe.
This is a big problem for the people living in close contact with them, as cockroaches can be extremely hazardous to human health. Their bodies are coated with all kinds of harmful bacteria (thanks to their preference for sewers and drains) which they can then transfer to food, furniture, and work surfaces.
Roaches also spell trouble for people with allergies, as cockroach allergens have been found to trigger and even cause asthma attacks. Old skin cases and feces are dusted over everything in an infested house, causing health problems in people with prolonged exposure to the bugs.
Aside from the health implications of living with roaches, these nasty critters can also kick up a stink in your home. Roaches release an unpleasant, musty odor which, while unnoticeable at first, can become very strong as their numbers increase.
Finding a nest of cockroaches on your property can be deeply disturbing. No-one wants to live side by side with cockroaches and finding a nest means you could be dealing with a full-blown infestation.
But what does a cockroach nest look like and how can you recognize one on your property? Getting an idea of what you’re looking for can be very helpful in determining the scale of the problem, and how best to address it.
What does a cockroach nest look like?
Cockroaches don’t actually build nests. When talking about roaches, the word ‘nest’ actually refers to large numbers of the insects living in one place. A cockroach nest, therefore, will look like a huge congregation of the creatures hanging out together, usually in a protected space. A nest can also be identified by the presence of discarded skins and feces. Other telltale signs of a roach nest include dark spots or smears, egg cases and large numbers of dead cockroaches.
If you find even one cockroach in your house this could be a sign of an infestation and you will have to look around carefully for a nest. Check behind refrigerators, under furniture and in cracks and crevices around the home to determine where your roaches are coming from.
Where do roaches live?
Cockroaches like warm, humid conditions, protected areas and ready access to food and water. The most common place to find a nest, therefore, is in the kitchen or bathroom. Here they can often be found lurking beneath bathtubs, refrigerators and other furniture items.
German cockroaches are the biggest culprits for home invasion. These critters can frequently be found around food preparation areas, though it is not uncommon for them to invade other parts of the house. They may even make their way into bedrooms, where they can take over your wardrobe and lay eggs among your clothes and shoes.
But what about outdoor roaches? Unlike German cockroaches, American roaches are less commonly found in homes. Instead, they prefer to inhabit sewers, basements, boiler rooms, and steam tunnels. Although American roaches favor the great outdoors they will absolutely come inside if the temperature drops. They are, therefore, most likely to be found inside during wintertime. If you suspect American roaches have moved into your home, inspect cracks and crevices around the kitchen, bathroom, and attic to work out where they’re coming from. Just like German roaches they enjoy warm, humid environments and will usually hang out close to food and water sources.
How many roaches is an infestation?
You’ve established that you have cockroaches in your house, but how can you determine the scale of the problem? Is this something you can deal with alone, or will you need to call in professional help?
The first thing to do is work out how many insects you’re cohabiting with. Finding just one or two cockroaches around the house isn’t too big a deal. As long as you act quickly, you should be able to eradicate the insects before the situation gets out of hand. Making sure kitchens and bathrooms are kept clean and free from food waste can ensure that they don’t return once you’ve gotten rid.
Finding hundreds of cockroaches, however, is another matter. An actively breeding roach population can boom in no time at all and what was once a small infestation can quickly become a living nightmare. German cockroaches, the species most commonly found in homes, can breed faster than almost any other type of roach. A population of hundreds can, therefore, become tens of thousands in a matter of months!
A heavy infestation of roaches will require chemical control measures. Depending on how dire the situation is, you may be able to implement these yourself. If you are facing thousands of cockroaches, however, it is advisable to call in professional help!
Spotting even one cockroach in your house should cause concern. For every roach, you see there are likely to be a hundred more and you could be sitting on top of an infestation without even realizing it! If you suspect you have cockroaches on your property, therefore, it is very important to hunt down and eradicate the nest.
The word ‘nest,’ in the case of roaches, refers to large numbers of the insects inhabiting the same small area. Nests usually contain lots of live and dead cockroaches, egg cases, cast-off skins, and fecal matter.
Depending on the size of your infestation, you may need to call in professional help to remove your roaches. If you think you may be dealing with thousands of these bugs, strong measures must be taken to eliminate them!