Cockroaches are a common problem for Florida homeowners, but you can prevent most infestations through rigorous attention to sanitation and potential entry points. If you do notice a growing colony, natural and chemical insecticides (best applied by a professional pest control company) can stop a roach problem in its tracks.
In Florida, where high levels of humidity create a roach’s moist paradise, knowing how to prevent and stop an infestation is an essential skill for homeowners. Keep reading to learn how to defend yourself against everyone’s least favorite creepy crawlers.
Identifying a Roach
The densest cockroach populations in the United States can be found in parts of Florida, and according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development, 30.4% of homeowners in the state report at least one roach infestation per year.
But not all cockroaches are created equal. In order to live with (and fight against) Florida’s cockroach community, it’s important to know the difference between the major types of roach commonly found in Florida.
|Type of Roach||Average length||Color||Can it fly?||Where to spot them|
|American cockroach||2-3 inches||Reddish-brown||Yes||Basements, drains, crawl spaces|
|Smokybrown cockroach||1 inch||Dark-brown||Yes||Attics, gutters, palm branches|
|Florida wood cockroach||1.5 inches||Dark reddish-brown||No||Compost heaps, wood piles|
|German cockroaches||.5 inches||Light brown||No||Kitchens, bathrooms, garages|
|Australian||1.5 inches||Dark-reddish brown||Yes||Greenhouses, wood piles, bathrooms|
|Brown-banded||.5 inches||Alternating dark and light brown bands||Yes||Almost anywhere|
|Asian||1.25 inches||Black or dark brown||Yes||Basements, drains, crawl spaces|
How to get rid of roaches in Florida
Let’s say you’ve noticed cockroaches in your home. One roach isn’t necessarily cause for panic, but if you’re seeing more than one, or if you notice their droppings around the house, you may be looking at a growing colony.
The first step for dealing with any kind of roach infestation is to start very strict sanitation habits. That means washing dirty dishes, sweeping and mopping floors, emptying trash bins, and wiping up any spills, crumbs, or other possible sources of food. Remember, roaches are here to eat: the less trash you have in your home, the less attractive it will be to them! For more extensive tips on cleaning and what roaches love, click here.
Your next step is exclusion: try to identify and seal off any possible entrances allowing roaches into your home. If you’re lucky, you’ll keep the roaches out just by cleaning and covering up gaps.
If not, it’s time to go on the offensive. Calling a professional pest control company will ensure everyone in your home is protected with professional application methods that will be far more consistent with label requirements, faster and in most cases, much more cost effective for solving the issues than do-it-yourself methods.
Chemical roach killers—and when to hire a professional
If you are ready to get aggressive with your unwanted house guests, these conventional methods of roach removal can help deliver results.
Bait stations: If you want to kill a colony almost instantly, bait stations can be very effective. When a roach eats the bait in the station, it returns to its community, who then feast on its poisoned body.
Insecticide gel: Squirt a little roach-killer gel into the cracks, gaps, and small crevices that cockroaches love.
Roach spray: Spray high-traffic roach areas with a specialized insecticide, and your six-legged enemies will scurry back to their dens carrying the residue, making it an effective way to deal with large infestations.
The disadvantage of chemical roach killers, of course, is that they rely on toxic substances, making them risky to attempt yourself. It’s always recommended to call your local pest control company to handle issues like these!
If you’ve tried different approaches and you’re still seeing those sneaky buggers scurrying around your floorboards, it’s time to call for backup. A professional exterminator can identify entry points and choose the most effective method to kill the infestation for good, and safely.
How to keep cockroaches from coming back
Once your roaches are gone, you can relax, but don’t let your guard down completely. Make sure to maintain good sanitation practices so they don’t return.
- Reduce moisture in your home by buying a dehumidifier.
- Limit food consumption to one room, if possible.
- Watch out for leaky plumbing and tempting cracks allowing pests inside.
- Create a nightly anti-roach routine by emptying the trash, washing your kitchen floor, and making sure all dirty dishes and food containers are cleaned up.
Is it common to have roaches in my home in Florida?
Roaches are a very common pest in Florida, with over 30% of homeowners reporting at least one infestation each year.
What attracts roaches?
Roaches are attracted to dirty dishes, crumbs, garbage, cardboard, leftover food, and other sources of mess in your home. Read more tips to keep them away by clicking here.
When is Florida’s roach season?
Roaches are active all year, but because they love moisture you can expect more roach activity during Florida’s rainy summer.
If you’ve noticed cockroaches around your home or business, call Brock Pest and Lawn Control right away! Our team provides professional, eco-friendly pest control services for homes and businesses. As colder weather closes in, you may start to notice more insects and other pests trying to use your space as their own. Make sure to get a head start with our extensive, year-round pest control services. As a locally owned and operated pest control company, we proudly serve Florida’s Gulf Coast and northern counties with offices in Panama City, Fort Walton and Panama City Beach.
Have a pest emergency? We provide same day services! Contact our team today.