The number of pests that can get into your Opelika property would probably surprise you if you saw a list. We have quite a few. Fortunately, the vast majority of those pests are mostly a nuisance. There are only a few that are considered a threat to your property, or a medical concern for you and others in your home. German cockroaches are both. Let's take a look at the threat German cockroaches present, and what you can do to protect yourself and those you love.

german cockroaches on a kitchen floor
cockroaches crawling on baseboards

Property Threat

German cockroaches leave their excrement everywhere they go. If they infest a storage area that has fabrics, furniture, or other items that can be stained, their black droppings can be destructive. These cockroaches are able to chew through cardboard, paper, and plastic, which can make them a threat to stored items. When they feed on items that have glue or paste, they can damage them. 

Health Threat

When German cockroaches infest your home, they can contaminate your dishes, silverware, stored foods, food preparation surfaces, toothbrushes, and other sensitive items. Their bodies, shed skins, saliva, and droppings can all be a source of disease. They also aggravate asthma symptoms, and are known to increase hospitalizations for those who suffer from asthma, particularly children.


German cockroaches are the worst of all cockroaches because of their ability to do very well in man-made structures. It is important that you be able to identify these cockroaches if you ever uncover them. A German cockroach has a large seed shape. It is tannish yellow in color and has a dark equal sign on its back. An adult will be between ½ and ⅝ of an inch in length. Newly hatched nymphs can be ⅛ of an inch.


German cockroaches will gravitate to warm, humid areas of your home. They are most likely to be found in a boiler room, basement, cellar, laundry room, or bathroom. They will venture out to get food from your kitchen and pantry, but are less likely to establish themselves in these rooms.


German cockroaches eat many of the foods we eat, but they're also known to feed on rotting organic matter, paste, soap, glue, toothpaste, feces, and other strange things. Their food selections can cause trouble for you. As they feed on rotting organic matter and feces, they can be exposed to extremely harmful microorganisms and spread them around. As they feed on wallpaper paste, they can damage your wallpaper. As they nibble on remnants of toothpaste on your brush, they can contaminate it and make you sick.


Female German cockroaches carry their oothecae with them. This is the egg pouch of the cockroach. Each pouch can have 40 eggs. The nymphs that emerge from these eggs can complete their development in about 60 days. This allows German cockroach populations to increase quickly.


  • Sanitation can help reduce a cockroach population and resist a cockroach infestation. Good sanitation removes food options. Clean surfaces, vacuum regularly, and keep your floors clean. Be sure to consider deep cleaning. Cockroaches live in tight spaces, and are able to feed on food in places you can't easily get into. Also, keep in mind that cockroaches prefer to eat things that are rotting.

  • Make sure to remove your trash from your kitchen frequently. This will reduce smells, and remove rotting food that cockroaches will feed on.

  • Keep your dirty dishes in soapy water. Cockroaches will make a meal out of the food left on a dirty dish.

  • Reducing humidity and fixing plumbing issues can make your home uncomfortable for German cockroaches. Install dehumidifiers in humid areas, such as your basement or cellar.

  • Use your fan when taking a bath or shower. Fix leaky pipes or faucets.

  • Consider putting your pantry foods in sealed containers. This keeps smells in and cockroaches out.

  • Seal gaps, cracks, and holes on the inside and outside of your home. While it is impossible to fully exclude cockroaches, reducing pathways can make it more difficult for them to spread and thrive.

Cockroach Control In Opelika

Remember that Prewett Pest Control is always available to assist you with complicated pest problems, like a German cockroach infestation. We can also provide you with ongoing pest control services to prevent pests from getting into your home. Reach out to us and request a pest control inspection to get started.


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