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COCKROACH & CRICKET

Cockroaches
There are two main species of cockroach in Britain, Oriental and German Cockroaches.

Appearance
Cockroaches are distinguished by their very long whip-like antennae, flat oval bodies and rapid, jerky walk. The adult German Cockroach is a light yellowy/brown and is 10 to 15mm long. The Oriental Cockroach is dark brown/black and is 20 to 24mm long. Immature stages of Cockroach, look exactly like adults, just on a smaller scale.

Characteristics
The German Cockroach carries its egg case, until the 30 or more nymphs are ready to hatch. The Oriental Cockroach deposits its 13mm long egg capsule on packaging, sacking or in suitable dark crevices, before the 16 to 18 nymphs hatch around 12 weeks later. They grow in stages, from nymphs to maturity in 6 to 12 months for the Oriental Cockroach, and 6 to 12 weeks for the German Cockroach.

Habitat
Cockroaches are rarely able to survive out of doors in the British climate, but thrive around the heating ducts and boiler rooms of large centrally heated buildings e.g. hospitals, bakeries, hotels and restaurant kitchens, and blocks of flats. They cluster around pipes, stoves, and sinks, especially in humid areas, and will often remain hidden during the day.

Diet
Cockroaches will feed on almost anything, including refuse, faecal matter and food for consumption. They also require access to water, and will be generally found in inaccessible harbourages, close to water and food. Cockroaches can survive for several months without food, but will not live for more than a few days without water. 
 
Why control Cockroaches?
 When foraging for food and water, Cockroaches can contaminate food, utensils, and preparation surfaces as they go. They taint food with an obnoxious smell and can be vectors of disease, capable of carrying the organisms which cause food poisoning in humans and many other bacteria. 
Cockroaches can ruin an organisation's reputation. If clients and customers spot evidence of cockroach infestation in the premises you manage, they are likely to complain and request a refund, report on your company negatively potentially resulting in closure by an Environmental Health officer, making it unlikely for some people to want to do business with you again. 
How to prevent Cockroaches Areas with food, water and dark spaces to hide are ideal environments for Cockroaches to live. Here few prevention tips for securing your property: 
  • Keep areas clean and tidy - Clean all surfaces thoroughly to remove any food residue. Try and not leave dirty dishes and utensils in the sink. Keep bins covered, clean, and emptied regularly. Areas such as top or beneath your refrigerator are warm and food collect their, attracting Cockroaches, so clean these areas regularly.

  • Proofing and Repair - seal gaps around doors, windows, and where utility lines enter to prevent entry. If possible, repair any leaks beneath the sink, and on the sink top, immediately, thus cutting a potential water source.
 
How to get rid of Cockroaches Control of cockroaches is seldom easy because of the difficulty of getting the insecticide to the insect. The insecticide, ideally, should have sufficient persistence to kill the nymphs hatching later from un-hatched egg capsules. For any Cockroach infestation, we would always recommend contacting a professional pest control company, preferably a member of the BPCA. They are trained in cockroach control and will have access to a range of professional use insecticides which are not available to the public.However, if you decide to carry out the work yourself then you can buy amateur use insecticides from a local hardware store. Before you do anything please consider the following steps:

  • Hygiene - A thorough clean of the area should take place prior to the insecticidal treatment. Pay particular attention to removing food and water sources and hiding places.
  • Sticky traps - The use of sticky traps is not recommended for controlling cockroaches, but should be used for monitoring purposes only.
  • Insecticidal control - The success of the treatment depends on what insecticides are chosen, and how thorough the application is. Remember to pay particular attention to cracks and crevices where eggs and nymphs may be found.

    Crickets
 Closely related to the Cockroaches, most species of cricket live outdoors, only rarely entering premises. One species, however; the House Cricket, may live within buildings throughout the year. 16mm long and yellow brown with darker markings on head and thorax it favours warm, humid locations such as the heating duct systems of hospitals. They are less common in domestic households than they once were, largely due to the loss of the traditional fireplace. They are nocturnal and are considered a pest mainly because of the chirping of the males, produced by their front wings being rubbed together. They may damage foodstuffs and fabrics.
 
  • How to get rid of Crickets: Like Cockroaches they can be difficult to eradicate. Suitably labelled sprays and powders applied to harbourages will help. However control is seldom easy because of the difficulty of getting the insecticide to the insect. The insecticide, ideally, should have sufficient persistence to kill the nymphs hatching later from un-hatched egg capsules. For any Cricket infestation, we would always recommend contacting a professional pest control company, preferably a member of the BPCA. They are trained and will have access to a range of professional use insecticides which are not available to the public.
     
Having problems with Crickets?

When using any insecticide, make sure it is administered in a safe and secure manner, and that products are kept out of reach of children and pets.
WARNING: 
When using insecticides always follow the instructions on the label.
Use a trained professional pest controller.

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