Cockroaches are one of the most unwelcome sights for any homeowner. Unfortunately, they are common in many households, especially in warmer climates with high humidity, like Arizona. While it may seem challenging to eliminate these pests, there are simple steps you can take to prevent infestations and keep their numbers at bay.
Cockroaches in Arizona typically live for about a year, although some species can survive for up to two years. They are attracted to organic matter like decaying leaves and wood, as well as sweets and meats. To survive, cockroaches need moisture and typically dwell near plumbing fixtures, sinks, and other water-rich areas in your home. They take shelter under rocks or debris found outside and come out daily to search for food and water.
How Cockroaches Thrive in Your Home
Cockroaches thrive in warm and humid environments, with an ideal temperature range between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit and a humidity level of 75-90 percent. They are attracted to areas with plenty of food and water sources, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms. Cockroaches also need access to dark areas like cracks and crevices in walls and flooring, where they can hide during the day and come out at night to search for food. They prefer areas with minimal human activity and a source of moisture, such as pipes or leaky faucets, to stay hydrated.
Types of Cockroaches in Arizona
There are several types of cockroaches commonly found in Arizona homes, including:
American Cockroach – the most common species, reddish-brown, can grow up to 1.5 inches long. They often live indoors near water heaters or other areas with the right environment for them to thrive.
Turkestan Cockroach – these roaches are typically light brown or tan, with a more slender body shape than the American cockroach. They prefer outdoor environments like wood piles or leaf litter but may occasionally wander inside looking for food sources.
The Australian cockroach is an introduced species that has become increasingly common throughout Arizona. They are medium-sized, light brown with yellow stripes running down their backs, and enjoy living inside homes with plenty of food sources.
How to Prevent Cockroach Infestations in Your Home
Keep a Clean Home: The first step in preventing cockroach infestations is to keep your home clean. This step means wiping down countertops, sweeping and mopping floors regularly, and promptly cleaning up spills and crumbs. Keeping food in sealed containers and regularly disposing of garbage and other waste is also essential.
Seal Up Cracks and Crevices: Cockroaches can enter your home through even the tiniest cracks and crevices. Seal gaps around windows and doors, and use caulk or weather stripping as necessary. Inspecting your home for potential entry points, such as gaps around pipes or electrical outlets, is also essential.
Eliminate Moisture: Cockroaches need water to survive, so eliminating sources of moisture in your home is essential. Check your home for leaks in pipes and faucets, and fix them immediately. In addition, ensure your bathroom and kitchen are well-ventilated to prevent moisture buildup, and regularly wipe down damp surfaces.
Store Food Properly: Cockroaches are attracted to food sources, so storing your food in sealed containers is essential. Keep your pantry and cupboards clean, and dispose of expired food promptly. Don’t leave dirty dishes in the sink or countertops; immediately clean up any spills or crumbs.
Use Cockroach Baits and Traps: Cockroach baits and traps can be an effective way to control infestations. These products contain a slow-acting poison that the cockroach ingests, spreading the poison to other colony members. Moreover, one can use traps to catch cockroaches without resorting to chemical means.
Hire a Professional Exterminator: If you have a severe cockroach infestation in your home, it may be necessary to hire a professional exterminator. These professionals have access to more effective insecticides and can provide a more thorough treatment of your home. They can also provide ongoing pest control services to help prevent future infestations.
Getting Professional Help
If you’re dealing with a cockroach infestation in your home, it’s time to call the professionals. Companies like Horn Pest Management specialize in controlling cockroach populations using tactics like baiting and exclusion methods that reduce access points to food sources. In addition, they can inspect your home for areas where cockroaches may live or hide and use effective pest control products to rid your property of these unwanted visitors.