Why Cockroaches Are Bad News For Your Wilmington Home

A cockroach on furniture in a living room

Wilmington residents, imagine this: you’re watching your favorite show or eating a family dinner, relaxing after a long day at work when you see something small crawling around in the corner of your eye. Shoe in one hand, vengeance in the other, you peer around the wall, and that’s when you come across your worst fear: a cockroach. 

Perhaps this happened to you recently, or you came across the sign of an infestation in a different way. Regardless, the sight of cockroaches in your home can ruin anyone’s day. Cockroaches are some of the toughest insects to get rid of, and the sight of one can spell a long-term battle if you don’t handle the infestation quickly. That being said, let’s go over the most common cockroaches in the Wilmington, NC area and what you can do to prevent them. 

Eek! A roach!

If you come across a cockroach in you're Wilmington home, you're likely to see one of four species: the German cockroach, the American cockroach, the Oriental cockroach, or the brown-banded cockroach. 

Common to most homes is the German cockroach. German roaches only reach around half an inch in length and, like other roaches, are reddish-brown in color with rounded bodies and spiny legs. They also have wings on their backs, though they are unable to fly. 

American cockroaches, by contrast, are around 1 1/2 inches, though they can certainly grow larger than this. They are darker brown compared to German cockroaches. American cockroaches are able to fly but rarely do so. 

Slightly less common, but still very pesky, are the Oriental cockroaches. These pests grow to around an inch in length and are much closer to black than other cockroach species, but the definitive way to tell that you have Oriental cockroaches is the smell. These roaches emit a foul, musty odor, often from the moist, dark corners that they hide in. 

Finally, Wilmington residents may come across the brown-banded cockroach. These roaches are lighter brown compared to other roaches and have light brown, distinctively banded bodies. This species can also fly, but only the males are airborne - the females’ wings are useless. 

Problems Associated with Roaches

All of these cockroaches spell trouble in their own unique way, but the overarching problems associated with them are a disease. Cockroaches move into your home because, for them, your house is an endless feast. Crumbs, trash, your pantry, and any organic matter are all fair game for hungry roaches.

Unfortunately, cockroaches don’t just bring their hungry families, they also bring disease. While it isn’t clear how cockroaches vector human diseases, they certainly bring a host of harmful bacteria with them such as E. coli and Salmonella. However, the main medical threat they present is aggravated allergies and asthma; roaches can give you lifelong breathing problems just by living in the cracks and crevasses of your home. 

Cockroach Prevention Tips

Once roaches get in, they reproduce rapidly. One female can hatch 40 larvae in three weeks. How do you prevent these infestations from starting? Here are some tips:

  • Seal all possible cracks and crevices around your home’s exterior. Cockroaches fit into the tiniest spaces, and if they see an opportunity for entrance, they’ll take it.
  • Scan all your grocery bags for bugs before you put food away. One stray bug can soon become thousands.
  • Store away all foods. This includes sealing off your pantry and keeping your kitchen area clean and free of standing water. 
  • Make sure you regularly clean dark, moist spaces, and run any sinks that you don't regularly use – cockroach infestations usually start in undisturbed spaces. 

Of course, even the best defenses can’t always deter a roach problem. If you spot a roach in your Wilmington home, don’t wait for the problem to resolve itself – it most likely won’t. Reach out to the experts at Jay Taylor Exterminating, and we’ll keep your home pest-free. For over 75 years, our trusted experts have specialized in roach prevention and elimination as well as the extermination of other unwanted pests. Contact us today!