Nobody wants cockroaches in the house – but this is the time of year when you’re likely to spot them indoors.
New Zealand is home to a number of cockroach varieties, the most common being the German, Gisborne, American and native.
Species doesn’t matter to most of us though – just about everything about cockroaches is, well, gross.
They scuttle across food preparation surfaces; eat each other when there’s nothing else to chew on; grow up to 5cm long and run at speeds of 5.4kmh – which, when you compare that to their size, equals a human running at a whopping 330kmh.
Their speed and
scuttle isn’t the worst of it, though.
Cockroaches can also spread serious disease like salmonella, dysentery, gastroenteritis and typhoid, which can be particularly dangerous for kids, the elderly or people who are already ill.
Unfortunately winter’s chilly and soggy conditions outdoors make this the ideal time of the year for cockroaches – and all the things you hate about them – to head inside.
Cockroaches thrive in warm, moist and sheltered areas that are close to food and water – or in other words, in or near your kitchen.
They head indoors as temperatures drop to find warm cosy nooks that are handy to everything they need to get through the winter. They are also very hardy.
There are stories of cockroaches being found alive in the back of pizza ovens, inside coffee machines or in the bottom of freezers.
It’s even said that they can handle phenomenal levels of radiation and still reproduce.
The best way to manage cockroaches inside is preventing them from getting in in the first place.
Seal gaps under doors and windows and around pipes.
Fill cracks and crevices around skirting boards, under bathroom and kitchen sinks, and behind big appliances.