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What London property owners need to know about cockroaches

What London Property Owners Need To Know About Cockroaches

Cockroaches are pests that everyone knows about, but no one thinks they will end up with them in their house. However, the fact is that roaches are highly active in London.
For the safety of your London property, it’s wise to learn a little bit about cockroaches so that you can take steps to prevent cockroach infestation from occurring in your home and avoid the pest control for cockroaches.
The following information is what London property owners need to know about these stomach-turning creatures.

Cockroach Species In The United Kingdom

There are more than 3000 different species of cockroaches and some are considered pests while others are beneficial for the environment. Pest cockroaches can carry various diseases. The most common cockroach species in the United Kingdom are  Brown-banded cockroach, German cockroach, Oriental cockroach, and American cockroach.

Brown Banded Cockroach
One of the smallest of the invasive cockroaches, the brown-banded cockroach may reach up to 14.5 mm in length. This type of colorful roaches received its name from the light brown or tan crosswise bands that are present on the wings of the adult roaches and across the body of the nymphs and youngs.
Brown-banded cockroaches can feed on almost anything from food waste to nylon stockings and even paper. These insects have been found to carry and spread harmful bacteria and protozoa which can cause diarrhea and gastroenteritis. In fact, roaches indoors have been found to trigger asthma and allergies. Also, these cockroaches are able to transfer disease organisms that cause food poisoning and dysentery by contaminating food, cooking utensils, and food preparation surfaces.
Brown-Banded cockroaches need warm temperatures to strive. As a result, they often enter our homes looking for warm shelter, but the most common way that brown-banded cockroaches get inside a home is when infested food items, furniture, and electronics are brought in.

German Cockroach
Adult German cockroaches can be easily recognized by their light brown to tan coloring with two dark stripes, located on their backs. Female German cockroaches tend to be darker than males. German cockroaches prefer warm and humid places close to food and moisture sources. They are frequently found in residential and commercial kitchen environments, and bathrooms, so these areas are the two most common places for an infestation to occur.
Droppings may appear as small, dark, material left on countertops or inside kitchen cupboards. When German cockroach populations are present in large numbers, it may be possible to detect a mild, unpleasant odor.
Oriental Cockroach
Oriental cockroaches can be recognized by their shiny black to a dark reddish-brown color. As adults, female and male cockroaches, vary in different sizes, are quite different in appearance as well. Growing to only 25 mm in length, the smaller males have shortened, three-quarter-length wings.
Commonly oriental cockroaches gain entry into households by going under doors and through gaps as well as following pipes, sewers, and drains into a building. These pesky pests can pick up germs on the spines of their legs and bodies as they wander through waste bins, sewers, and drains, and then they can transfer these germs onto foods and food preparation surfaces.

American Cockroach
Adult American cockroaches are mahogany-colored. The area behind their heads is outlined with a yellow band.  American cockroaches can also fly. Their wings develop when the roaches become adults.
American cockroaches prefer warm and damp areas. They can easily pass under doors, gaps, and crevices. Basement windows and garages are also common entryways. The most common places where you can see American cockroaches are basements, bathrooms, and kitchens.

Signs Of Cockroach Infestation

Cockroaches are nocturnal critters and prefer to hide away in small cracks and crevices during the daytime. This means that early-stage infestations can breed and multiply unnoticed for quite some time.
Cockroaches are also known to produce an aggregation pheromone which is a chemical attracting cockroaches to each other, so they tend to be found aggregating together in groups within suitable harbours.
5 Unmistakable Signs of Roaches 
  • Live cockroaches – Common places to find cockroaches are behind the fridge where they are attracted to the heat of the motor, under the kitchen sink and under and around kitchen appliances such as microwaves and ovens. If you find a cockroach harbourage you will often discover a number of cockroaches of different sizes, these being the adult males and females, and the juvenile nymphs which will vary in size.
  • Night inspections - During night time you are more likely to see cockroaches foraging as this is the time when they come out to feed.
  • Shed skins & egg capsules - The cockroach nymphs shed their exoskeleton when they are growing into larger sized nymphs and after into adult roaches. You could find numerous shed skins amongst a roach infestation. In fact, female cockroaches are also known to carry and drop egg capsules,  containing numerous cockroach eggs.
  • Cockroach Faeces – Depending on what the cockroaches have fed on, their faeces can be solid or liquid. Their solid faeces appear as numerous small black droppings. Their size is less than 1mm in length. The liquid faeces appear as small dark smear marks.
  • Unpleasant Odour – Cockroach infestations have a detectable odour, but this is only really noticeable where there is a severe cockroach infestation.
Preventing A Cockroach Infestation
Like any pest, prevention is always better than cure when it comes to dealing with an existing cockroach infestation. Maintaining a good level of hygiene in your London home, storing food in sealed containers and disposing of food waste promptly, as well as sealing any cracks into your property, will help you make your home a less attractive place for cockroaches and prevent infestation. In fact, it is always best to avoid second-hand items such as electrical and kitchen appliances from unknown sellers if you want to avoid the risk of a cockroach infestation.
How to get rid of cockroaches
When it comes to getting rid of a cockroach infestation, it’s best to focus your efforts on removing what cockroaches thrive on. 
  • A thorough clean: A thorough clean will help to prevent cockroaches. As we previously mentioned cockroaches can leave behind grease marks, skin particles and faeces. Wipe your tops down in your kitchen, give the floor a good clean and never leave dirty dishes in your sink. 
  • Sealing up cracks: Whether you find gaps between your cupboards, skirting boards, doors, walls – make sure to seal them.
  • Removing their food sources: take your bins out regularly and don’t leave food open anywhere in your London home.
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