Do you tend to have the ‘out of sight, out of mind’ approach to cockroaches, only dealing with them as they pop up? If so, the following cringe-worthy facts might change your tune about how and when to eliminate these stomach-churning critters from your home – once and for all.
1. They’re ridiculously resilient
Like, really, really resilient. The modern cockroach has been around for 200 million years, meaning they have outlived dinosaurs, survived the ice age and endured harsh nuclear radiation experiments. It’s safe to say that cockroaches aren’t going down without a fight.
2. No head? No worries
Speaking of not going down without a fight, did you know that a cockroach can live for a week or more without its head? Cockroaches breathe through tiny holes located in each body part known as spiracles. So, as much as you’d like to think otherwise, sometimes removing the head on a cockroach isn’t going to do diddlysquat to get rid of them.
3. They’re bacteria bandits
Cockroaches carry up to 33 different types of bacteria including salmonella and E. coli, which we know can make us sick. They can even be carriers of the poliovirus.
Roaches spread these nasties by vomiting and defecating on our food and around our homes.
4. They’re faster than you think
Cockroaches are among the fastest of all land creatures, with legs that can carry them at an astounding 80 centimetres per second. This not only makes them near impossible to catch, but also means they are spreading germs and bacteria around our homes at a disturbingly rapid and far-reaching rate.
5. Cockroaches are reproductive machines
Some female cockroaches only need to be impregnated once in order to lay eggs for the rest of her life. A female German cockroach (commonly found in Australia) can produce up to 300 offspring in her lifetime. So if you catch a cockroach that has wandered from the nest, just remember that there are usually plenty more where it came from – literally thousands!
6. Stink bugs
Yes, cockroaches can emit unpleasant odours and the stench is strengthened by numbers, so it’s possible to detect a cockroach nest purely by locating the region of the musty smell.
7. Night crawlers
Cockroaches are nocturnal creatures, so if you spy one running around your home during the day, it could indicate that it was forced out of the nest due to overcrowding, which in turn indicates that you may have a roach infestation on your hands.
8. Sneaky scavengers
From meat to bread, sugar to alcohol, rotting garbage, sewage and even toothpaste, cockroaches love to eat it all, which is why they dwell in our kitchens to gain prime access to food spills, crumbs, open packages and scraps in pet food bowls.
9. Fierce endurance
Despite their scavenging ways, the unfortunate truth is that cockroaches can live for a month or more without food. So even if your kitchen is spick-and-span, roaches may still be lurking. What they definitely can’t live without, however, is water and will die if deprived of H2O for a week.
10. Water babies
Did you know cockroaches can hold their breath or go without air for 45 minutes and they can even survive being thrust underwater for a painstaking 30 minutes? So ultimately, trying to drown a cockroach is probably not the best solution.
Now that we know just how tough cockroaches are, it’s pretty clear that trying to tackle them one at a time is a frustrating and futile pursuit. Instead, a long-term solution that aims to banish all the lurking cockroaches and their nests will prove to be a far more successful approach. The most effective roach-busters to seek out include Mortein Kill and Protect Indoor or Outdoor Surface Sprays and Mortein Kill and Protect Control Bombs and Baits.