For most people, being stuck between a roach and a hard place is one of the last places they’d ever want to be. Both dirty and dangerous, these little pests are one of the least desirable creatures in the entire animal kingdom! Cockroaches can spread harmful bacteria as well as trigger allergies and asthmatic reactions.
Fortunately, however, although there are dozens of species of cockroaches living in the United States, only a handful are considered significant pests to people.
Researching and being aware of what pests you’re battling is the best way to protect your home and family from infestations.
To aid you in this endeavor, we’ve compiled a list of the top five cockroach pest species of the Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) area.
Considered the most prolific of the indoor cockroaches, German cockroaches will typically spend all of their lives inside structures. These creepy crawlers are one of the most widespread insect pests threatening urban residences and developments. German cockroaches are known to spread germs and instigate allergy and asthma issues. They are capable of quickly overwhelming buildings as they can produce an entire generation in about 100 days.
German cockroaches can be found indoors hanging around in small concealed spots near food or water. Adults of this species are ½ to ⅝ inch long and are light brown with two dark stripes on their backs. Both males and females display wings, but neither are capable of flying.
The American cockroach, also known as palmetto bugs or waterbugs, is the largest cockroach found in Texas. Adult American cockroaches are reddish-brown with round yellowish borders outlining their thorax or upper backs. Adults of this species can grow to be 1½ to 2 inches long, and both males and females can fly.
In addition to their impressive size, these roaches are also impressively long-lived, reaching up to 2 years old. I’m sure we can all agree that two-inch cockroaches flying around for a couple years are not something any of us want in our homes!
Although American cockroaches are found indoors at times, these roaches are primarily outdoor insects and only venture indoors searching for food and water. Palmetto bugs may be the largest roach in Texas, but they are still capable of squeezing into homes through incredibly tiny cracks and holes. They are also extremely common in sewers.
The oriental cockroach is another pest that lives primarily outdoors but will sneak inside at times to hunt for food and water. When indoors, these insects keep mainly to the darker, cooler, lower areas of houses, primarily basements and crawl spaces. They commonly gain access indoors via wet ground-level sources such as floor drains.
The adult oriental cockroach is dark reddish-brown or black and somewhat shiny in appearance. They are about 1¼ inch long, and the wings of this roach are short, rendering them incapable of flight.
Smoky Brown Cockroach
Along with the oriental and American cockroaches, the smoky brown is another large species of roach. Adults can reach up to 1½ inches long and are also dark brown/black and shiny with rather lengthy wings. The wings of smoky brown cockroach adults actually extend beyond the end of their abdomens. These insects also typically boast antennae longer than their bodies.
Smoky brown cockroaches live primarily outdoors under moist, warm sheltered areas, for example, under mulch or other ground covers. However, this roach species, like others, will wander indoors or near structures at times in search of food and water.
Around homes, these insects frequently enter homes through cracks in soffits and eaves. Once inside, they usually remain in the lower ground-level portion of a structure like basements and crawl spaces.
Turkestan cockroach populations are on the rise and on the move in Texas. This Asian-native species (also called the rusty red cockroach) is a relatively recent addition to the U.S. and is wasting no time expanding its range in Texas. Cockroaches like the Turkestan spread ably by hitching a ride in moving boxes and trucks with unsuspecting movers. Thus far, the Turkestan has mainly been an issue for south Texas, but it won’t take long for them to reach DFW with more people on the move.
Thankfully, this cockroach species is another that prefers to remain outdoors near meter boxes, leaf litter, potted plants, or compost. When Turkestan cockroaches are found indoors, it is typically males attracted to the lights.
Male and female Turkestan roaches appear strikingly different. The males are smaller, about ½ to 7/8 inches long, and are light brown or yellowish in color. Alternatively, female Turkestans look much more like oriental cockroaches than their male counterparts. Females are dark brown/black, somewhat shiny, and have short wings. Though, on both males and females, the outer bases of the wings are pale beige.
How Gecko Green Can Help
Not only are cockroaches unpleasant and germ-ridden, but they can also be dangerous and trigger medical conditions like allergies and asthma. Don’t go another day worrying about cockroaches! Call Gecko Green today, and our expert dfw pest control technicians will protect your home from pests like cockroaches.
There’s no need to be stuck between a roach and a hard place with Gecko Green on your team!