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german roach
gastrointestinal problems
hectic nature
magic wand
kitchen cabinets
roaches
Roaches: What You May Not Know
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Roaches: What You May Not Know

As a former professional pest control operator, I found the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas to be very hectic. You might think it was because of the hustle and bustle of shopping for presents, parties, baking and all the festivities, it wasn't. I also found it a bit sad, too. Families usually get together around Christmas, if no other time of the year. This article is about those who waited all year to address a problem that had no quick cure. If I had a magic wand I could have made a fortune ridding the homes of hysterical callers of the dreaded German roach.

While a German roach is the smallest of the common group of roaches in my area, namely West Virginia, it has the reputation for being the fastest producing species and one of the most resistant to control. Not quite a half inch long and a kind of tannish brown, this little female can produce an egg sac containing up to thirty baby roaches. They mature rapidly and can reproduce and can pollute a home in a very short time. Hence the hectic nature of my profession before Christmas.

Until an infestation is totally out of control, roaches, including the German roach, are only out foraging at night in the darkness of your kitchen cabinets and countertops. If you see roaches in broad daylight, you have a serious problem and no amount of over-the-counter product will get the problem under control, unless you beat them too death with the can. Roaches like tight, dark crevices behind baseboards, under cabinets and in refrigerator motors, among many other areas. When these areas are full, with roaches stacked up like sardines in a can, you will see roaches running on counter tops, in the sink, on the floor and around appliances.

A study was conducted in urban areas of Atlanta many years ago and it found that children in these areas had a high allergy rate due to exposure to cockroach infestations in the housing projects. Roaches, who survived the Ice Age, carry diseases that can cause gastrointestinal problems and even food poisoning. Roaches are bad news for so many different reasons, and prevention is hard but not impossible.

If I had a dollar for every tearful woman who called and needed me to get rid of her roaches before her in-laws arrived for Christmas, I would be very wealthy by now. How I dreaded to tell these women that I had no magic wand and it would take time to get the problem under control. I would explain to them what the problem was, how I could do my very best to get the process of elimination started, but they needed to know up front that their guests would see activity, as it would take time to get the infestation under control. Most of the callers had already tried products from the store, so they called me out of desperation. My technicians would work very hard to kill and flush out as many roaches as possible to get things started and try to help these ladies in their hour of need. I know I would not have wanted my mother-in-law to find roaches in my house and could understand how they truly felt.

Some of our most long-term customers came from the holiday calls, and they told me my honesty about their problem was one of the biggest reasons they stayed a customer. They didn't want to ever have a pest problem like that again, and believed that prevention would be the best thing they could do for themselves and their families.


Street Talk

Hi Debbie...as most people do..I also hate roaches...but I hate them if they get to crawl on me the most....I have picked up something that had one on it and it crawls up your arm....Yelch!!!...of course dropping what I picked up is the first reaction whether it breaks or not is of no importance. What is important is getting it off of me..haha...So my most recent story is when I first moved onto the sailboat with my sweet better half because that is where he lived, I saw a roach now and then...He had said to me that we will never get rid of these....I did not like that statement and decided after a while to work on it....soooo we got a bunch of those roach bombs and he opened up all the cabinets and bilges and set off two of them before he came out of the boat coughing. We did not see a roach for a while but the bombs had said even though you do not see them to set off another bomb 28 days later to kill the eggs...we did this again only with his mouth and nose covered this time with a bandana and we have never seen another roach....However...we have also kept every single cardboard and paper sack and box off the boat from the time it is bough it goes out onto the dock trashcan. even food from the store like pasta boxes and cereal boxes. NONE of them stay on the boat...we put it all into ziplock bags or canisters and we are still happy about not seeing any roaches and it has been 8 years now.....yea!!! good info in your article...thanks....k

Reply
  about 8 years ago

Ewww, I hate roaches. great info here Debbie!

Reply
  about 8 years ago
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