What Is That Critter?
For us Top End locals, cockroaches are a part of every day living in the tropics. We have big ugly ones, little ugly ones, and some in between ugly ones but unfortunate no cute ones. So what is this menagerie of cockroach species and how can you identify them. In this blog series 'cockroach identification' we are going to help you to identify types of cockroaches species, their preferred hangouts and tell tale signs of cockroach activity.
The German Cockroach
The German Cockroach is tough and resilient and are mainly found in commercial building such as restaurants, hotels, cafes and food processing areas. Residential properties in the Greater Darwin area are not the preferred habitat of these cockroaches but if you do happen to spot one of these cockroaches in your home action should be taken immediately to solve any German cockroach infestation before it becomes biblical. Being able to reach sexual maturity within a short period these guys bred prolifically and are as hard as nails to eliminate becoming an issue and health risk in a very short time period. Even a limited food source is no bother to these bad boys, they will turn cannibalistic and eat each other. Yikes! The good people of Germany have disowned these fellows, so if you are ever in Berlin do as the locals do and refer to them as The Russian cockroach.
Appearance - They are a small cockroach measuring around 15 mm in length and there colour can vary from a light tan to almost black depending on there habitat. It has two dark bands on either side of its head and unlike its mate the Brown-banded cockroach, even though it has wings its a poor flyer.
Harbourages - Liking mainly commercial habits they have the ability to hid in very small confined refuges. Typical hides are cupboard hinges, under mats, furniture, appliances, under gaps in skirting boards, just about anywhere close to a food source and water where they can stow away in small cracks and crevices.
Signs of Activity - Unlike other cockroaches, German cockroaches are nocturnal but are not as put off being active by light so can often be found foraging when numbers are high in daylight hours. Faeces or small 'pepper' droppings can be found in quantity around there chosen harbourages.