People worldwide travel to our islands to enjoy time in what they believe is paradise. We live in a beautiful part of the world, surrounded by incredible ocean views, beaches, and mountains. The consistently warm temperatures allow us to enjoy these amenities year-round, but there is a downside.
The downside of living in Honolulu happens when you least expect it. It occurs in the middle of the night when you stumble into the bathroom, walk into the kitchen for a late-night snack, or enter the area to fix breakfast. What is the downside of living in paradise? Cockroaches! These insects run across your path, catch you off guard, and send you racing to the other room to get away from them. We greet one another with "Aloha" in Hawaii, but no one welcomes these filthy creatures with a sense of love or compassion!
When cockroaches are in your home, it no longer feels like paradise; instead, it seems you are living in the opposite place! If cockroaches are destroying the joy of living in this piece of heaven, you need the Honolulu pest control team from Pest Tech Hawaii. Our nine founding members grew up in Hawaii with over 130 years of combined pest control experience. We are your locally owned company, not a big brand, company based in the mainland. Our years of experience and knowledge of the unique needs of living in Hawaii enable us to provide the best service to our customers. We will answer frequently asked questions in this article and give you tips so you can win the battle against cockroaches.
How Do I Tell If It's Cockroaches In My House?
Many vacationers party at the same time cockroaches are active — at night. While those who live and work here sleep, cockroaches are foraging for food among rotting garbage, sewers, drains, and other disgusting areas. Because cockroaches are active in the dark, you are likely to see them only when you surprise them with a late-night trip to the bathroom or the kitchen. Although seeing a cockroach in your Honolulu home does not necessarily indicate a cockroach infestation, due to its rapid reproduction rate, there is a high probability that you do have an infestation.
Cockroaches work in the dark, but they leave these visible signs of their presence that you can see in the light:
- Pepper-like fecal matter: Cockroaches constantly defecate and leave behind jagged-edged droppings. These droppings are similar to mice feces but are not rod-shaped with pointed ends.
- Fecal stains: Cockroach droppings stain surfaces on the top of doors, corners, and around cracks in walls.
- Dark-colored egg capsules: Female cockroaches do not lay individual eggs; instead, they produce egg capsules containing eggs. In Honolulu, the two types of cockroaches are the American cockroach and the German cockroach. A female German cockroach releases six to eight egg capsules, known as ootheca, during her 20 to 30-week lifespan, and each has about 48 eggs. During the fertile period of an American cockroach female, she will produce an average of one egg case monthly for ten months, and each purse-shaped capsule contains an average of 16 eggs. Cockroach eggs in your home are glued to surfaces near food sources by the mouth secretions of the roaches.
- Dark-colored skins: The skeleton of a cockroach is on the outside of its body, known as an exoskeleton. For a baby cockroach to go through the various growth stages, known as instars, it must shed its exoskeleton. Each time the roach molts or sheds its skin, it leaves behind a shell. The presence of skins in dark areas of the house is a sign of infestation.
- Musty odor: Obviously, cockroaches cannot talk to each other like we do, but that does not mean they don't communicate. Male cockroaches convey seductive messages through pheromones inviting the females to reproduce with them. If you have a large number of roaches present in a concentrated area, you may notice a stale aroma from the pheromones.
- Live cockroaches: Although cockroaches are nocturnal insects, that does not mean you will never see them. As illustrated previously, you may stumble on them in the middle of the night or early in the morning; occasionally, they will be flushed from underneath furniture and other hiding locations when disturbed.
Look for the signs of infestation if you find a cockroach in your house. When those indices are present, you have an infestation and need cockroach control immediately from Pest Tech Hawaii. Even if you do not see all the indicators, it is still best to call us before an outbreak occurs. Remember, cockroaches quickly reproduce!
Can Roaches In My House Really Make Me Sick?
In addition to the idea of cockroaches roaming through your Honolulu home at night while you sleep, the main reason you need to get rid of cockroaches is that they are dangerous. Unlike other insects, cockroaches are not detrimental to your health because they sting or bite you (they don't have stingers) but are harmful due to the diseases they carry.
Cockroaches spread 33 diseases, six parasitic worms, and seven pathogens. They contract these disease-causing organisms with spines on their cockroach legs as they forage for food in sewers, drains, rotting garbage, compost piles, and animal feces. When the roaches enter your Honolulu home, the pathogens fall off and contaminate the surfaces as they travel over them.
Cockroaches hide in areas where food and moisture are present, which means they are prevalent in kitchens, pantries, and bathrooms. When the roaches move through your kitchen cabinets and crawl over utensils, the bacteria, viruses, and worms on their legs fall off onto the spoons, forks, and knives in your drawers. You could be ingesting infectious organisms when you take those utensils out and use them to eat! Well-known diseases cockroaches spread are E. coli infection, salmonellosis, typhoid fever, cholera, and dysentery. These infections produce fever, diarrhea, nausea, and abdominal cramps. In some cases, hospitalization is necessary to combat illnesses spread by roaches.
Cockroaches not only shed disease-causing pathogens throughout the home but may trigger allergic reactions. Cockroaches produce a protein in their body, feces, and urine; this protein causes reactions consisting of a runny nose, sneezing, itchy and red eyes, coughing, and postnasal drip in some people. Airborne particles of cockroach droppings can cause allergic reactions and asthma attacks, especially in children and elderly adults.
Why Do I Have Cockroaches In My House?
Cockroaches in your house came in from outside, where they had found food, water, and shelter. However, they entered your home due to severe weather events like long, dry periods or heavy rains. Once inside your house, the cockroaches found food, water, and shelter, so they stayed.
Houses in Honolulu are ideal environments for cockroaches because they provide stable temperatures. Cockroaches prefer temperatures over 70℉, and since most people maintain a home temperature at this level or higher, houses make the perfect shelter. Of course, in Honolulu, consistent outdoor temperatures over 70℉ are not a problem like in many places on the mainland, but finding food, water, and shelter outside a home can be an issue. If cockroaches enter a home and find food, water, shelter, and stable warm air, they will stay.
These preventative steps are what keep cockroaches away from your Honolulu home:
- Seal all foundation cracks and gaps from incoming wires and pipes to stop cockroaches from entering your house.
- Trim shrubs and branches away from the house to keep cockroaches from using them as a highway to your home.
- Repair holes in window and door screens.
- Install sweeps on all exterior doors to stop the roaches from crawling under your doors.
- Cover the attic and crawlspace vents with screens or wire mesh to prevent the cockroaches from entering the house.
- Remove attractions for your yard like animal feces, rotting fruit, and leaf and wood piles.
- Provide proper drainage to ditches and low-lying areas in the yard.
- Keep all garbage containers closed at all times.
- Place compost in a closed storage bin.
- Vacuum the house regularly; suction corners and cracks with a wand attachment.
- Wipe cooking and eating surfaces after each meal.
- Clean kitchen cabinets and the pantry periodically to remove old food and crumbs.
- Store food, including pet food, in sealed plastic or glass containers.
- Remove debris such as clothing piles, old magazines, and stacks of cardboard from the basement, attic, and closets.
If you want to know how to keep cockroaches out of your house, the answer is simple: maintain a clean and dry environment inside and outside the home.
What's The Best Way To Get Rid Of Roaches?
While the prevention tips previously listed will help keep cockroaches away, if you have them in your Honolulu house now, you need the best cockroach pest control in Honolulu from Pest Tech Hawaii. When you schedule an inspection, our highly-trained, licensed, and insured technicians will thoroughly inspect your house and look for infestation hot spots, attractions, and entry points. After our investigation, we will create a treatment plan strategically targeting the cockroach species, egg locations, and areas of infestation. Using our decades of experience combined with safe and effective products and treatments, we will remove cockroaches from your Honolulu home. Contact us today and request your estimate.
I have been using Pest Tech for the unit I manage and my personal property for the last 3 years. They are always on time, makes sure to follow up before regular service, cost efficient and always friendly.