Cockroach Life Cycle Explained by a Professional Exterminator of Roaches
Any exterminator of roaches can tell you that there is nothing pleasant about these pests. Not only do cockroaches seem indestructible, but they also appear to multiply while your back is turned. You see one bug skitter across the floor, and before you know it there are 10 more. Scientists have worked hard to understand more about cockroaches so that professional exterminators in Las Vegas and elsewhere can devise new strategies to control them.
Interesting Facts About Cockroaches
Did you know that there are more than 4,000 species of cockroaches in the world? Although there are many different breeds, the two most common critters you’ll encounter on U.S. soil are the American cockroach and the German variety. Our country also hosts the brown-banded species and the Oriental cockroach, but in smaller numbers.
No matter the species, all cockroaches have certain things in common that make them very hardy and difficult for exterminators in Las Vegas to eliminate.
For one thing, they can live for up to a week without their heads. Smothering them, covering them with water, or trapping them in a jar won’t get rid of them, either, unless you have plenty of patience. Cockroaches can hold their breath for up to 40 minutes.
They can also survive for three months between meals and up to one month without water. One drop will hold them over for a very long time.
Roaches don’t need to get into your pantry to stay alive. They feast on wallpaper paste and the glue from book bindings. That’s why you’ll often find them hiding in bookshelves and behind loose bits of paper on your walls.
They can adapt to almost any environment, but they prefer warm, moist areas that are dark. It’s even been said that cockroaches could survive a nuclear bomb.
It’s the facts about cockroaches that make it so very difficult to control them when they invade your property. However, understanding how they reproduce and what they need to live will help you take steps to prevent an infestation.
Stage One: Egg
Most roaches begin life as part of an ootheca (egg sac) that is attached to its mother’s abdomen. That is why roaches are referred to as “oviparous” insects.
Other species come from eggs that develop inside the mother’s body. These are called ovoviviparous roaches, and the female would have to be destroyed before the eggs reach maturity and hatch into live baby cockroaches.
What’s more, a female roach only needs to be inseminated one time to produce a lifetime supply of eggs. They can produce up to six new generations of little roaches per year, with anywhere from six to 40 eggs per sac.
Bee exterminators don’t have the same difficulties when their quarry is at this stage of development. Usually, they just need to relocate the hive with the queen intact to get rid of the problem. Roach extermination takes planning and persistence.
One remedy that some Las Vegas exterminating companies use is sterilization. Deploying a chemical called hydroprene disrupts the growth cycle of cockroaches.
However, preventing them from producing egg sacs is only half the battle!
Stage Two: Nymph
After about six to eight weeks in the ootheca, tiny white baby roaches emerge. This is the nymph stage of their life cycle. This stage lasts for about a year, with the roaches molting as they feed and grow bigger. The white coloring will eventually transform into the darker, brownish color we see when roaches mature.
If you’re going to need extermination in Las Vegas, this is a good time to hire a pest control company. Roaches reach maturity and can begin to reproduce as soon as 15 weeks after they’re hatched.
Stage Three: Adult
Cockroaches can reproduce at 15 weeks, but they’re not considered fully mature until they reach one year of age. At this point, they’ve already attained half of their life expectancy, but they can produce a lot of little roaches before they go. At the peak of maturity, a female cockroach can produce up to two egg sacs per week.
Pest control experts evaluate the extent of an infestation using a simple average number. Because roaches are quick and good at hiding, any numbers are at best just a guess.
• Five or fewer roaches are considered a light infestation.
• 10 to 25 cockroaches are viewed as a moderate infestation.
• 25 or more roaches are classified as a heavy infestation.
If you estimate the average number of roaches per infestation and consider that about half of them may be females, you’re looking at the possibility of hundreds of roaches taking over your home within a very short time.
It is the speed of breeding, the number of potential babies per ootheca, and the difficulty killing them that makes even a single roach in your home one pest too many.
How Understanding Roaches Helps Eliminate Them
Although cockroaches have been around since before man roamed the earth, individual roaches only have a total life span of one to two years. It’s what happens during their lifespan, in addition to their biology and physical makeup, that makes them so difficult to defeat.
Understanding how roaches live and procreate helps us to devise new ways to keep cockroach populations under control.
For example, roaches can squeeze through the tiniest of spaces. Inspect your home periodically to ensure that there are no cracks, gaps, or holes they can use to get in. Look for areas that collect moisture, such as under sinks or around pipes. Keep all food in airtight containers, including pet food. Feed and water your pets on a regular schedule and only as much as they can consume in a short time.
Most importantly, call an exterminator as soon as you see signs of pests on your property. An exterminator won’t be able to eliminate them from the world entirely, but he or she can work hard to keep them from taking over your home.
When You Need a Professional Exterminator of Roaches
If there’s one roach in your home, it will soon have plenty of company. Once cockroaches move in, it takes a strategic effort to get rid of them for good. This is especially true in Las Vegas, where weather conditions and open spaces provide plenty of opportunities for even a small invasion to become a major infestation.
Any sign of cockroaches in your home or commercial space means that it’s time to contact a professional exterminator of roaches. As you can see from this overview of their life cycle, roaches are resilient creatures who need very little support to live and breed.