We like German People, but we do not like German Cockroaches.  Before you sell your home, consider this article.  This is not intended to be an all-inclusive article, but it will give you a head start in understanding and controlling German Roaches.


Before we get started, let’s learn a few new words:

  • Aggregation – a cluster of things that have come or been brought together

Example:  “There are an aggregation of people at the party.”

  • Harborage – a sheltered, protected place

Example: “My home is a harborage from the storm.”

  • Forage – a wide search over an area in order to obtain something, especially food or provisions

Example: “I went foraging for food on the island.”


Behavior and Harborage

  • Aggregations of cockroaches live in areas high humidity and nearby food (sounds a lot like us).
  • They will find harborage into which they can fit closely.
  • As the number of roaches increases and favorable harborage is filled, roaches are forced to leave the aggregation or remain in less favorable harborage.
  • They move around, looking for food and new harborage sites, during their foraging periods just before dawn and after dark.
  • If German Roaches are seen during the day, the population is probably so large that the available cracks are already full, or food and moisture are in such short supply that daytime foraging is necessary.
  • After mating, females feed intensively for several days, then seek secure hiding places (with high humidity) where they can be safe with their egg capsules.  (Smart!)
    • Such seclusion means that females with egg capsules feed less frequently and are exposed to pesticides less often.  Preventive pesticide applications are likely to be less toxic by the time female roaches come in contact with them.  Sometimes, you’ll see no adult roaches after our treatment, but later observe “little black ones.”  In these cases, you’re reporting the success of the females with egg capsules that were deep in harborage and did not come in contact with the pesticides.
  • The most susceptible areas for these roaches are the wall moldings, under the sink, stoves, under refrigerators, counters, canisters, cabinets, etc.  These are all areas where humidity can be present, and a food source can easily accumulate.
  • They prefer to rest on wood rather than on metal or other smooth surfaces.
  • Adult German cockroaches can live up to a year, but most will die from various causes long before that time – especially with our help!


“How did they get in my house?!”

  • While the answer to this question can vary, a very common way is from accidently bringing them into our homes.  They are regularly carried from place to place in such things as bagged potatoes and onions, beverage cartons, grocery bags, food carts, other food packages, handbags, and the folds of clothing.
  • Movement between apartment usually does not occur unless the two adjacent apartments share common plumbing.



The key to controlling these pests is to keep extra clean!  We cannot stress this enough!!  We have had homes where the humidity is so high, and the food sources so plentiful, that even after numerous treatments we’ve seen only small results.  If you don’t want to clean your house VERY THOROUGHLY, then you’ll need to hire someone who will.  We can get rid of German Roach infestations only when a home-owner does their part in keeping everything tidy.

  • The German Roach is a general feeder but is particularly attracted to fermented foods and beverage residues (e.g., beer spills).
  • If water is present, adults can live about a month without food, but young nymphs will die of starvation within 10 days.
  • Without food or water, the adults die in less than 2 weeks.
  • As mentioned a bit earlier, stressed cockroaches tend to wander or forage for resources aggressively, even during abnormal periods, such as the daytime.