Understanding German Cockroach Behaviour


Since one female German cockroach has the ability to produce as many as 500,000 offspring in a single year, it doesn’t take long for German cockroaches to give Pest Management Professionals a headache. To prevent a few cockroaches from quickly multiplying into a colony, PMPs should use the most effective tools to control these impressively productive pests.

Below are some behaviour facts that will help us better understand German cockroach traits and improve our chances of elimination: 

These cockroaches tend to exist within about 3 metres or less of their harbourage area. The use of sticky trap monitors can help you pinpoint their source. If this is unsuccessful, do not keep going to the client and redoing the same thing.

These creatures are nocturnal and prefer to move around in darkness. When looking in a dark room or area, leave the lights off and use a flashlight to search. Once you find some German cockroaches, turn the lights on and watch where they scatter. They should lead you to their harbourage areas.

The carrying capacity of a German cockroach population is usually dependent on the number of harbourage areas, rather than food and water. To reduce harbourage sites, seal cracks and crevices where the cockroaches most likely harbour, or bag and seal large harbourage areas like cardboard boxes. Areas that cannot be sealed, like electrical appliances, require the use of an insecticide product.

Of all domestic cockroach species, German cockroaches have the highest reproductive rate. They mature very quickly (within 45 days) and continue to reproduce, so their numbers can easily skyrocket. Thus, until you completely eliminate a population, coming back on a quarterly basis is too long to wait between intervals. Don’t evaluate your control program by how many cockroaches are controlled, but rather by how many still remain. Use monitoring devices to prove you did a complete elimination job, or to pinpoint where more work is needed.

German cockroaches prefer to feed on gel baits that retain their moist, soft gel texture. ADVION Cockroach 0,6RB from Syngenta Professional Pest Management exhibits these characteristics with its excellent initial bait acceptance, as well as its ability to retain its palatability for up to three months.

Since the 1990s, cockroach gel baits have become some of the most effective and preferred products for cockroach management. ADVION Cockroach 0,6RB contains a highly palatable formulation with a low impact active ingredient, indoxacarb. Its formulation has the unique ability to cascade through a cockroach population at two levels – secondary and tertiary kill – to effectively overcome the reproductive potential of German cockroaches.

1 Buczkowski, G. Scherer, C. and Bennett, G. “Horizontal transfer of bait in the German cockroach: Indoxacarb causes secondary and tertiary mortality.” Journal of Entomology 101(3): 894-901.