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Cockroaches are the most common pest in the world, their existence cause a great damage of every business.
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Cockroaches have changed little during the 400 million years they have been around. They are among the most important pests of household and commercial establishments. Not only is their mere presence a nuisance but they are known to be capable of carrying many common disease pathogens as well as causing allergic reactions in many people. The more common of such disease pathogens include bacteria in the genera Salmonella (food poisoning), Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, Coliform, Bacillus, and Clostridium, the bacteria Escherchia coli (diarrhea) and Shigella dysenteriae (dysentery), and hepatitis B antigen.


Of the approximately 4,000 living species of cockroaches in the world, only a few of these species inhabit man’s dwellings. The more common in Hong Kong are American cockroach and German cockroach.


American cockroach
Despite its name, American cockroach is not native to North America but was most probably introduced via ship from Africa. It is worldwide in distribution, adult about 34-53 mm long, color reddish brown, both sexes fully winged but are poor to moderately good fliers.


They usually infest food-storage and food-preparation areas, basements and city sewer systems. They can enter structures by being brought in, coming up from the sewer system via drain, or occasional mass migration from other structures during warm weather. Although they feed on many kind of food, they show a particular fondness for fermenting food.


German cockroach
The German cockroach is by far the most important and usually the most common of the cockroaches. In addition to being a nuisance, it has been implicated in outbreaks of illness, the transmission of a variety of pathogenic organisms at least one parasitic protozoan, and allergic reactions in many people. It is worldwide in distribution, adult about 13-16 mm long. Color light brown to tan, rarely glide or “fly”.


German cockroaches are found throughout structures but show a preference for warm (21oC) and humid places. They are usually found in kitchens and in bathrooms, but infestations often occur in living rooms where people eat and drink while watching TV. Any crack or crevice located near a source of food and/or water is prime harborage, and they spend 75% of their time in such harborages. These cockroaches are most commonly introduced into buildings via paper products or paper packaging such as cardboard boxes, drink cartons, and via secondhand appliances such as refrigerators, television, microwave, etc. They feed on almost anything with nutritive value including all kind of food, and such things as soap, glue, and toothpaste.


Cockroach control is a 5-step process.


  1. Prevention. This consists of inspecting all incoming items for cockroaches and oothecae, and making sure that the building is in good physical condition to reduce entry.
  2. Good sanitation. Such practice reduces the amount of available harborage, food, and water.
  3. Inspection. A thorough inspection is the key to successful control because it determines which species are involved and where the infestations/ populations are and therefore, where treatment is require.
  4. Pesticide application. This utilizes fogging, residual baits, liquids, aerosols and microencapsulated pesticides usually placed in cracks and crevices, drainage, surfaces or in voids.
  5. Maintenance service. Such service consists of regular inspection and/or the use of monitoring traps to find missed or newly introduced cockroach, and treating any active infestation found.