Roach-Proofing Tennessee Kitchens For The Fall

Roach-Proofing Tennessee Kitchens For The Fall

As you’re baking your apple pies and pumpkin chocolate chip cookies this autumn, the last thing you want is a cockroach crawling around your kitchen! If you’ve ever seen a cockroach move, you know just how startling they can be. Their speed alone is baffling. Not only can these pests cause a huge scare, but they also pose health threats as well. And even worse news, when you see one, there’s likely to be many more you don’t see. An infestation could include dozens or even hundreds. Don’t let your fall be ruined by cockroaches!

What exactly are the risks that cockroaches pose? Good question. Aside from startling you and increasing your heart rate, these pests are very filthy creatures. It’s common for them to be found in sewers, dumpster, and other unsanitary places. Filth is what they love. They’ll enjoy feeding on rotting food, garbage, and even carcasses. The problem with this—if you haven’t already guessed—is they can enter your home after and run freely on your countertops. Cockroaches will gladly crawl around the toilet bowl one moment and find themselves up around your toothbrushes the next. Just thinking about the places they’ve been is enough to make our stomachs turn.

Their traveling and living habits bring an array of problems. Lots of bacteria can be spread from place to place through cockroaches. They’re known to collect bacteria on their bodies and disperse pathogens, spreading them to people. Some illnesses that have been spread from cockroaches include E. coli, Salmonella, typhoid fever, gastroenteritis, cholera, and many others. Food poisoning can also result from cockroaches as they can damage packaging and spoil foods. On top of that, cockroaches are also able to bite. They aren’t aggressive insects, however, they will bite in self-defense and if they are hungry enough. What is enough to cause nightmares and sleepless nights, is that cockroaches will most likely bite at night and they go for eyelids as they prefer eyelashes and dead skin! But their bite is not known to be harmful and they’re not venomous. But their bites won’t be the cause of diseases spreading.

Alright, enough of how scary cockroaches are! The better question is what can we do to prevent these infestations from occurring? Russell’s Pest Control has some prevention tips for you to put in place:

  • Make sure to take out the trash frequently and store it in sealed containers away from your home.
  • Caulk any openings or cracks around the exterior of your home that might allow cockroaches a way in.
  • Keep the kitchen clean of spills and crumbs.
  • Make sure all food is stored in air-tight containers or in the refrigerator.
  • Install screens.
  • Correct ventilation issues and moisture-prone areas. Cockroaches are likely to be attracted to moisture and can be found in kitchens, bathrooms, crawl spaces, and basements.

Inspect packages and boxes before bringing them into your home. Cockroaches can hitch a ride in a variety of items.

Controlling cockroach infestations requires persistence, patience, and probably multiple failed attempts with DIY solutions. The best thing to do if you are worried about a cockroach infestation is to get an expert involved. Russell’s Pest Control offers both home and commercial pest control services. Our professionals can eliminate more than 30 common pests in homes throughout Knoxville and eastern Tennessee. Contact Russell’s Pest Control today to find out more information! We’ll help you determine which plan is best for you.

Cockroaches And Winter Weather

Cockroaches And Winter Weather

Roaches are one of the most common pests in Tennessee. If you’ve ever had a cockroach infestation, you know how big of a headache it can be. For every one you get rid of, it seems as though five more spring up in its place.

Winter can be a particularly troublesome time for cockroaches. As the weather gets colder, they seek shelter in the warm confines of our houses and apartments, which offer cozy places to live, access to water and lots of easy-to-find food. All of these amenities are much more difficult to find outside during the cold-weather months.

Unfortunately for us, these unwelcome guests aren’t very content to abandon this sweet setup they’ve established in our homes. However, you can take steps to try to keep these bothersome pests from shacking up in your abode. Here are three measures you can employ to keep these nasty bugs out in the cold.

  • Don’t leave any standing water around (such as in the sink or on countertops) and fix any leaky pipes if you have any.

  • Eliminate food sources by tidying up after cooking and eating. Don’t leave dishes sitting in the sink, and store food in airtight containers.

  • Seal any cracks in walls, both inside and out, to block off any potential entrances to your home.

Even if you do all this, you can still get roaches. Once you have them, they are difficult to get rid of. If you have cockroaches, contact Russell’s Pest Control. We’ve been ridding Tennessee of cockroach infestations for more than 40 years.

The Brown Bandit: Brown Banded Roaches

Despite a few false starts, we really are heading into colder weather. This means that pest pressure is decreasing and, in a short while, we can expect fewer encounters with our six-legged neighbors. Well, fewer encounters with most of them anyway. Why don’t we talk today about another species of roach since those are the sorts of pests we can expect to encounter all year long here in Knoxville and all of East Tennessee.

Previously, we’ve talked about German cockroaches, which have incredible breading power and can make a mess of a home pretty quickly. Today, we’ll have a look at brown banded cockroaches. Like so many other pests, brown banded roaches aren’t native to this area. They’re probably from Africa, but they’ve been in the U.S. for well over 100 years and have spread across the whole country. Believe me, any creature that can survive in Maine is not going to be dismayed by an East Tennessee winter!

Brown banded roaches can range in color from a yellowy brown to quite a dark brown. They are distinguished by the brown bands on their backs that are visible even through their wings. Yes, like all roaches they do have wings, but, unlike German roaches, brown banded roaches can use their wings. Although flying isn’t their preferred method of transportation, it’s still a viable option for them.

Most of the time, when you see roaches in a home, they are almost certainly centered in a room that has water access because roaches tend to be moisture-dependent creatures. This could mean that they have a nest in a bathroom or (even more likely) the kitchen, though they may also have set up shop in a less obvious room with a moisture problem like a water leak. Brown banded roaches, however, are not nearly so water dependent as their fertile cousins. In fact, you are just as likely to find them in a perfectly dry room of the house. If you have an inexplicable roach problem in your living room or a bedroom, there’s a good chance brown banded roaches could be the culprit.

A prime source for a brown banded roach infestation is actually corrugated cardboard. They love to lay eggs in the creases of the cardboard. If you have an unexpected roach problem when nothing else around your house has changed, consider whether you’ve received any packages recently and whether the box was disposed of quickly. There’s a chance the roaches rode in with your mail.

In general, roaches are a pain in the thorax to get rid of, and brown banded roaches can be even more frustrating since potential nesting sites for them could be spread all across the house. Step one in eliminating them will be to locate that nest if you can. You should be on the hunt for egg capsules, which are small, flesh-covered parcels that will be stuck to undisturbed areas in closets, drawers or cabinets. When you find where they’re laying eggs, you’re closer to solving the problem. Of course, baits are generally a good idea with roaches since they are such avid eaters. If you contact Russell’s Pest Control, we can also do crack and crevice treatments to get at the roaches where they’re nesting instead of waiting for them to cross over a treatment product. Just let us know if you need us!