American Roaches

Size: Adults can be slightly more than 50 mm (3 inches) long.

Color: Adult American cockroaches are reddish-brown or mahogany colored. The area behind their heads is outlined with a yellow band. Habits: Both male and female American cockroaches can fly. The wings develop when the roaches become adults.

American cockroaches normally live outdoors. They prefer warm, damp areas like flowerbeds, and under mulch. In many parts of the United States, people call them "palmetto bugs" because they live on trees. American cockroaches are very common in the sewer systems of many American cities.

American cockroaches enter homes to find water or food. They can easily pass under doors if the weather stripping is damaged. Basement windows and garages are also common entryways. When American cockroaches enter homes, they often go to bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms and basements.

Outdoors, American cockroaches eat leaves, tiny wood particles, fungi, and algae. They also eat small insects. Indoors, American cockroaches forage under appliances, in drains, in kitchen cabinets and on the floor. They eat crumbs, scraps of food, and spilled food that they find. They will also eat pet food that is left out overnight.

Pro Tips:

- Keep it clean. Good sanitation is the number one way to prevent cockroaches.
- Focus on the kitchen. Don't leave food out overnight. Wash dirty dishes daily. Wipe up crumbs and spilled food, even in cabinets and pantries. Clean kitchen counters with disinfectant spray every night. Don't forget the appliances. Roaches love to feast on grease and spilled food on, in, under, and behind your appliances, including your refrigerator, stove, dishwasher, microwave, toaster, and under the kitchen sink.
- Limit where you eat. Restrict food consumption to one room. This not only makes cleanup easier for you, it limit crumbs and spills that you might not notice in other rooms that provides another food source for roaches.
- Store all food in sealed containers. Roaches can fit inside the openings of typical cardboard packages that food comes in. This also applies to pet food. Pet food should be kept in a sealed container, preferably on the back porch so as to not attract roaches into the house. Pet food bowls and containers should also be emptied every night.
- Empty the trash. Make sure your trash can has a tight-fitting lid and empty the trash each night. Make sure your outside trash cans are clean and kept away from the home.
- Roaches feed at night. Vacuuming the kitchen floor nightly eliminates the food supply for roaches. Vacuum the other rooms in your house every 2 to 3 days, as well. This helps to get rid of roach feces, body parts, and egg sacs. These contain pheromones that attract other roaches into your home.
- Get rid of entry points. Seal around utility pipes and crawl spaces. Make sure windows and doors are secure and have weather-stripping if necessary. Seal all cracks and crevices.
- Remove anything roaches can use for shelters, such as cardboard and paper.