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German Cockroach

Blattella germanica (Linnaeus)

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    Learn About German Cockroaches

    What is a German Cockroach?

    The German cockroach is an obligatory domestic species, meaning it can only survive in places with human activity. Therefore, this cockroach can’t be found in outdoor natural habitats. This may sound like a limitation, but the German cockroach actually has the greatest worldwide distribution of any cockroach species because it can be found anywhere humans are also present.

    While cockroach infestations occur in a variety of human-occupied spaces, they are most often associated with restaurants, food processing facilities, hotels, nursing homes, and other institutional facilities. PMi offers full commercial pest control services, including treatment for German cockroaches.


    Pest Stats

    • Color:  Light brown to tan, with two dark, almost parallel stripes located on their backs, just behind their heads
    • Legs: 6
    • Shape: Oval
    • Size: ½”-5/8” long
    • Antennae: Yes

    “I called Pest Management Systems, Inc. requesting information about pest services concerning a particular insect I was seeing in my rental property. The receptionist was very knowledgeable concerning the insect with regards to how they breed and their season for egg hatching. She also advised me of alternative approaches to handle the situation. I really appreciate the fact that Pest Management Systems, Inc. did not attempt to sell a service that probably would not have provided the results I wished (like other popular pest control companies in my area attempted to do). I will definitely consider Pest Management Systems, Inc. in the near future. ”

    Harold, Verified Google Review

    What Do German Cockroaches Look Like?

    Adult German cockroaches are recognized by their light brown to tan coloring with two dark, almost parallel stripes, located on their backs. Female German cockroaches tend to be darker than males. German cockroach nymphs are dark brown to black in color with the same dark stripes located on their backs. While these cockroaches have wings, they rarely fly. Instead, they prefer to run.


    Signs of a German Cockroach Infestation

    These cockroaches prefer to live in warm, humid places close to food and moisture sources. They are frequently found in residential and commercial kitchen environments, and bathrooms, so these are the two most likely places for an infestation to occur. It is also likely to find cockroach dropping in areas they frequent. Droppings (frass) may appear as small, dark, “pepper-like” material left on countertops or in drawers. There may also be fecal staining, which appears as dark spots or smears in the corners of rooms, along the tops of doors or around small cracks and openings into walls.

    When cockroach populations are present in large numbers, it may be possible to detect a mild, somewhat “musty” odor.

    A Dead German Cockroach on the Floor

    German Cockroach Prevention

    How to Get Rid of German Cockroaches

    The best advice for cockroach control is to practice good sanitation. To prevent German cockroaches from infesting a home or business, people should maintain a clean kitchen by cleaning up crumbs, wiping spills and vacuuming often. Avoid leaving dirty dishes to pile up in the sink. It is also important to seal all entrances to the structure, especially around utility pipes, and ventilate crawl spaces to prevent moisture buildup. If there is evidence of a German cockroach infestation, contact PMi to inspect and provide integrated pest management to safely eliminate the cockroaches.

    German cockroaches can breed at a rate of up to six generations per year, so a treatment plan may be necessary to ensure the infestations remains in check.


    More than just a nuisance, cockroaches have been implicated in outbreaks of illness and allergic reactions in many people. Cockroaches have been reported to spread at least 33 kinds of bacteria,  and at least seven other kinds of human pathogens. They can pick up germs on the spines of their legs and bodies as they crawl through decaying matter or sewage and then carry these into food or onto food surfaces. Medical studies have shown that cockroaches cause allergic reactions and can exacerbate asthma attacks, especially in children. This makes German cockroach control incredibly vital.



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