Most famous for being able to survive a nuclear war, cockroaches may be the most despised pests encountered by homeowners, restaurant owners and property managers.
Recent research has shown:
Cockroaches can trigger allergic reactions and asthma attacks, especially in children.
But that’s not even the worst of it — they also carry more than 33 kinds of bacteria, including salmonella and e.coli.
There are 50 different cockroach species in the United States, making them one of the most diverse pests in the country. Only four, however, are prevalent in every corner of the country:
German cockroaches: They are the most common cockroach in the country, even rabbits don’t have anything on them. German cockroaches reproduce so quickly that they can have six generations living the same wall void at once. And they’re stealthy, too — they can fit through openings as small as ⅜ of an inch.
American cockroaches: One of the earliest settlers in the United States, these cockroaches came to the United States by ship. Though they are labeled American, they actually originated in Africa (and somehow slipped by immigration at Ellis Island). American cockroaches are the largest (in size) species in the United States.
Brownbanded cockroaches: Also known as “flying cockroaches” (are there two words more frightening when put together?), they’re named for the two distinctive light-brown bands that run across their darkish brown bodies. The males have fully developed wings, while the females have underdeveloped wings and can’t fly. They live, on average, for 208 days.
Oriental cockroaches: For some reason, the people who named cockroaches had lousy senses of direction. The Oriental cockroach doesn’t come from Asia at all. Their point of origin, much like the American cockroach, was northern Africa. These cockroaches are the ones that give the other species the worst name, because their offensive odor has been generalized to all cockroaches (something about which the other cockroaches are none too happy).