Cockroaches are one of the most common pests that can invade a building, and once they set up residence, they will quickly reproduce and cause a major infestation. Although most people prefer not to get up close and personal with a cockroach, identifying the specific type that is in a building can be useful when implementing control measures. Below are tips to spot the difference between American and German cockroaches, along with a few tips for controlling an infestation.
Identifying German Cockroach
According to the University of Rhode Island Landscape Horticulture Program, German cockroaches are the most frequently identified type of cockroach to be found in a building. They are easiest to identify by their size. At only one-half to one-inch long, they are one of the smallest types of cockroaches. German cockroaches are also light brown with two dark stripes that can be found just behind the head.
Identifying American Cockroaches
The most notable characteristic of American cockroaches is also their size. At approximately one and one-half inches, this type of cockroach is large enough to be spotted from across the room. They are also reddish-brown and have wings they use to glide across a room. Generally, an American cockroach will be found in dark, moist areas such as bathrooms and basements.
Knowing the type of cockroach that has infested a building will play a role in the measures used for control. For example, German cockroach infestations often require professional treatment due to their ability to reproduce quickly and hide in out-of-the-way locations that may go undetected by the property owner. American cockroaches also may require additional control methods that go beyond spraying. These cockroaches prefer moist environments and often enter a building through an exterior crack or through the plumbing. Performing a few building maintenance repairs may be necessary to prevent recurrences after professional pest control treatments.
Once a cockroach infestation has been identified, it is important to act quickly to find out which type of cockroach has invaded the building. Although the American and German cockroach are similar in their ability to spread disease and cause allergies, they may require very different methods to be used for control. By noticing the differences between the color, size and location of the cockroach, the best method for treatment can be selected to keep a building pest-free.