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|Color||Light to tan in coloration, with two dark, parallel bands extending from the tip to base of the head|
|Shape||Oval, Flat Body|
|Size||1/2 - 5/8" (1.25 - 1.5cm)|
|Flight||Some; Wings enable gliding but are not fully developed|
German Cockroaches often spread from one building to the next by hitching a ride in boxes or bags of produce, packages of food, clothing, furniture, or appliances. In areas with a high population, these cockroaches are sometimes seen during the day -- however, they are most active at night. When alarmed or frightened, this species can emit a very unpleasant odor.
This species prefers meats and grease, as well as foods that are starchy or sugary. If food is hard to come by, their diet can be broadened to include soap, glue, toothpaste, or even the bodies of other cockroaches. In cases with very large populations, they have been known to bite humans, and to feed on food residues on the faces of sleeping humans that share their home.
This species is best known for infesting restaurants, food processing facilities, hotels, and nursing homes. In colder climates, this warmth-loving species is only found in or near human habitats. They are the most common species found in homes across North America.
These pests are carries of a wide number of microbial pathogens, and will contaminate any countertops, food, dishes, or utensils they come in contact with. Among the dozens of harmful microbials they carry are the bacteria responsible for salmonella, diarrhea, typhoid fever, dysentery, food poisoning, and more.
The saliva, fecal material, cast skins, dead bodies, egg cases, and other parts of a cockroach are also the source of potent allergens. Individuals who are sensitive to these allergens may experience symptoms ranging from a scratchy throat or itchy sensation on the skin, eyes, or nose. More severe symptoms can include skin rashes or even an acute asthma attack.
German cockroaches have smaller bodies than other cockroach species, and are able to easily fit in small cracks and crevices where humans and predators can't reach them. Specialists use a variety of tools to eliminate an infestation, including pest vacuum cleaners, sticky monitors, baits, and insecticide dusts.
Preventing the cockroaches from entering the home by sealing off their entrance points -- as well as creating highly sanitary conditions where food sources for the pests are limited -- are also proven methods for eliminating an infestation in a home.