Do I Have a Cockroach Infestation?
By Chris Williams on November 10, 2015.
We often have customers who have just discovered a cockroach in their home and are freaking out. They want to know if they’re infested and what to do.
A Single Cockroach Does Not an Infestation Make
Seeing a single German cockroach does not necessarily mean that you have a cockroach infestation but until you can prove otherwise, you should probably assume that there are more cockroaches. Cockroaches are good hitchhikers and it’s very possible that someone in your house brought the cockroach in from another location.
Think about your recent habits and where you’ve been. If you’ve recently brought in used furniture or equipment, cardboard boxes or grocery bags of items, or potted plants, a cockroach or two could have come in as well. I once bought a vintage, chrome toaster that was in great shape from a thrift shop. When I got it home and plugged it in to test it, a very warm oriental cockroach stumbled out. That was a very brief cockroach infestation that was resolved with a rolled-up newspaper.
Signs That You Have an Active Cockroach Infestation
On the other hand, if you see more than one cockroach, there’s a good chance that your cockroaches have already met, dated, and produced offspring. You can assume that there is an active infestation of German cockroaches if you see any of the following:
- 5-10 adult cockroaches on kitchen countertops at night
- female cockroaches carrying egg cases at their rear end
- many small, dark cockroach nymphs
- a mixture of both cockroach adults and various sizes of nymphs
Let an Exterminator Answer the Question
When you are looking for evidence of cockroaches, you are looking for live or dead roaches, egg capsules, cockroach feces (looks like dark grains of sand), fecal spotting (dark spots), and cockroach feeding damage. In a minor infestation, German cockroaches are probably limited to the kitchen and bathrooms, but in a heavy infestation they can be hiding anywhere.
An experienced exterminator can even smell cockroaches in an account.
Unless you used to work as a pest control technician, you will be inspecting at a disadvantage.