Cockroaches are highly adaptive survivors, commonly known for their ability to endure challenging environments, tolerate long-spun lack of food, and tolerate some rather hostile living conditions.
There are tens of different cockroach species, each attracted to different environments, temperatures, and food sources. From warm and humid spaces to dark and chilly cavities, organic and synthetic materials – you can rarely make your property 100% cockroach-proof, as these pests are very diverse and surprisingly challenging.
The list of things that attract cockroaches inside a property is long, but, thankfully, some extensive parts of it can be considered and addressed. Below, you will find a list of cockroach magnets and the ways you can deal with them before you have to deal with the pests themselves.
What Are Cockroaches Usually Attracted to?
Cockroach control professionals warn about a set of common cockroach-attracting factors. They include but are not limited to:
Garbage Bins and Dirt Piles
Most cockroach species feed on every organic matter with any nutritional value, even if it doesn’t look like a portion of food to humans. This includes hair, decaying matter, books, clothes, dandruff, and even faeces or soap.
Cockroaches will, therefore, be attracted to full garbage bins, waste piles, and any other type of clutter inside the property. In fact, even dry food spills and waste splashes will smell good enough for the cockroaches to feel and approach it.
What do you need to do to minimise the chances of attracting cockroaches?
- Always use trash bins sealed with an extra plastic or biodegradable bag.
- Throw out your garbage bin every day and wash it before putting the next plastic or biodegradable bag on.
- Follow these rules for every garbage bin in your property – in the kitchen, the bathroom or toilet, the bedroom, the garage, etc.
Also, make sure you maintain the good hygiene of your personal belongings that can accumulate organic matter – hair brushes and toothbrushes, cotton and wool clothes, leather shoes, and laundry.
Foods, Food Leftovers, and Crumbs
Now that you know that even soap and faeces count as a portion of good food for cockroaches, imagine what actual foods can do to their appetite. As you may suggest, food packages, leftovers and crumbs are among the first and foremost cockroach specialties under your roof.
Cockroaches consume virtually any type of human food on offer – including seeds, grains, sweets, meats, cooked dishes, etc. They can also gnaw through different packages to reach a food once smelled.
Some steps to consider in this regard include:
- Try to limit access to your food storage. For example, never leave food on your table or kitchen counter, keep goods safely packaged in glass or metal jars, and keep kitchen cabinets closed.
- Never leave unwashed dishes overnight. Instead, do them immediately after you’re done eating, or place them inside the dishwasher and close the appliance. The same goes for beverage bottles and food boxes – they should be either cleaned or safely put in the concealed trash bin.
- Maintain perfect hygiene in your kitchen. Food splashes, greasy stoves, and bread crumbs on the floor are literal meals for cockroaches, so try to avoid ignoring them. Vacuum your floors often, sanitise your counters regularly, and maintain overall good general hygiene in your kitchen and dining spaces.
All of the above can be especially challenging for families with children and pets where minor accidents happen daily. There’s no need to get anxious about it but always do your best to minimise the damage before you go to bed, as your efforts might be precious against inviting cockroaches into your home.
Different Pet Foods
In case you have been wondering – pet foods are also considered a perfect main course for almost all types of cockroaches. This includes foods for cats and dogs, rodents, birds, and even aquarium fish and turtles. Here, you will be facing two challenges – storing and serving your pet food. Here is how to proceed following the best practices for keeping cockroaches away:
- Do not keep your pet dish loaded and full at all times. Only serve the amount needed for one feeding and ensure there are no “leftovers”.
- Don’t fill in your pet dish in the evening and leave it “just in case” overnight. Being woken up by your hungry cat in the morning is way safer than being woken up by the sound of creeping cockroaches.
- Keep the area around the pet dishes clean and polished. Pets can make a mess during eating, but it’s your task to bring the order back to the place.
- Do not in any circumstances leave bags of pet food open during the day or the night. A good idea might be to transfer the food in sealed containers immediately after the initial unpacking.
- Keep your pet water clean and consider putting it away during the night, as the moisture itself can be attractive for the cockroaches.
Once again – hair is something cockroaches love snacking. So, pet owners are strongly advised to regularly brush their pets’ fur and vacuum their property even before excess fur becomes visible.
Most types of cockroaches are heavily attracted to moist, humid, and damp indoor environments. This is the literally lost heaven waiting to be found combined with darkness and safety. The reason is that some cockroaches originally come from tropical climates, and they instinctively prefer them among all others.
Though the bathroom is the usual suspect here, it is not the only one. Some tips to make your place less attractive to cockroaches include:
- Regularly check your property for leaking pipes, broken spout, or moist wall cavities with open access to them.
- Waterproof your bathroom to avoid humidity in the walls, tile joints, sink gaps, etc.
- Avoid keeping open water sources such as kitchen sponges, wet towels, laundry, plant bowls, pet bowls, or human drinking glasses.
If your home measures high air humidity levels, it would be wise to install a dehumidifier to avoid producing precisely the climate that cockroaches are proven to love.
Darkness And Safety
Cockroaches are night creatures, meaning they continually seek a dark and safe place to spend the day hidden into. Unfortunately, many such places are inside a home, and sealing them properly is the only way to avoid inviting cockroaches inside the property.
Some common hiding places for these pests might be wall gaps or crevices, pipe holes, empty spaces under the roof, closets, cellars, basements, or garages.
To keep these spaces safe from intrusion, you are expected to:
- Apply caulk to block cracks and cavities.
- Seal all crevices that can be a potential entry point.
- Regularly inspect all humid and dark corners of your property.
Finally, perform an annual out-and-out property check with the help of a professional cockroach control company if needed.
Dead Cockroaches Inside The Property
You might be surprised to know that dead cockroaches usually serve as a food source for the living ones. Their dead bodies are known to discharge secretions such as acids and pheromones, telling other nearby cockroaches that there’s food around.
That’s a fundamental issue when dealing with a cockroach infestation because killing the present cockroaches will immediately attract new ones near or inside the place. Being aware of that fact can help you behave adequately and take the steps needed to solve the problem for good.
How To Keep a Dead Cockroach From Attracting Other Cockroaches Inside?
Above all, you shall dispose of the dead cockroaches as soon as possible and as far away from your home as possible. Next, you are advised to carefully clean all surfaces with strong disinfectants.
Finding the hiding spots of cockroaches, eliminating the population, disposing of it, and adequately sanitising the area is often easier said than done. That’s why it is strongly advised to seek professional help with your cockroach problem as soon as you suspect it. By following the approved industry practices, licensed pest control experts will help you deal with the challenge as fast, safe, and intelligent as possible.