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C o c k r o a c h   I d e n t i f i c a t i o n
Below are some of the most commonly reported roach species. This list is not exhaustive and Markley's Pest Elimination Inc. ecourages you to save a specimen for our technicians to identify to ensure your structure receives the correct treatment.
German Roach -  The German Roach is a highly invasive species of cockroach that thrives in hotels, restaurants, hospitals, nursing homes, and individual residences. This roach is small and colored with a light tan to dark brown hue with two distinct dark parallel bands starting just below the head and running the length of its body down the back. In temperate climes the German Roach requires man-made environments for warmth and food. Being nocturnal, they are usually seen foraging at night or in darkened rooms. In heavily infested communities you will see them roaming from home to home out of doors during night-time hours.
German Roaches are scavengers attracted to starches, sugars, fats and meats. They move along baseboards, cracks and crevices, nest within wall voids, under kitchen and bathroom sinks, under floor boards near plumbing fixtures, and inside some appliances such as washers, dryers, refrigerators and even microwave ovens. Because this pest is highly adaptable and reproduces quickly a structural infestation can grow very quickly and poses a serious health risk to any occupants. In fact, in ideal conditions one female can produce up to 360,000 offspring in one 13-month period. German Roaches will feed on animal feces, rotted and uncooked meats, and will thus carry disease on their exoskeleton. Their own droppings irritate asthmatics and produce an acrid stench.  It is very important to catch an infestation early to avoid a potentially lengthy cycle of treatments.
Pictured: Male Adult, Female Adult with Egg Case attached, Nymph & Adolescent German Roaches and Egg Case
American Roach -  The American Roach is one of the largest species of cockroach and can grow up to nearly two inches in length. Adults have fully-developed wings and they are quite capable fliers. Like the German Roach, the American Roach will infest hotels, restaurants, hospitals, nursing homes and individual residences. The American Roach is darker than other roaches and has a light yellowish band running from the left to right behind its head.
The American Roach wil enter a structure through water and other uderground utility lines. They are scavengers capapble of living on just about any soft and moist animal or vegetable matter. Because they gravitate toward the upper levels of commercial sewers and septic systems they should be regarded as a health risk. The American Roach is highly adaptable and reproduces quickly. Sightings should be taken very seriously as they are likley a sign of infestation.
Wood Roach -  Wood Roaches are common in moist woodlands throughout North America and thrive on decaying vegetable matter. They are similar in appearance to the American Roach only smaller, with the largest acheiving only 1.25 inches in length. Males have one yellow "captain's bar" marking on each side of the head. Adults have fully formed wings and are capable of flight. In the night time the Wood Roach is attracted toward exterior lights much the same as the moth is. When exterior temperatures fall they will seek shelter indoors. 
Unlike other roach species, the Wood Roach is not secretive when inside a structure. They are active both at night at day and will wander freely along the floor. They do not flee when lights are turned on or run from humans. Wood Roaches cannot survive inside man-made structures and can be removed by scooping them into a cup and tossing them outdoors. Preventative measures like moving firewood and brush away from your house will help keep them away.
Oriental Roach -  The Oriental Roach is easily recognized by its short, squat appearance and its abbreviated wings. This roach is not capable of flight and, like the American Roach, is usually found near sewer and septic systems, in basements, crawlspaces and waste recepticles. They are typically about an inch long and very dark brown to black in color.
Oriental Roaches are carriers of disease and sightings should be taken very seriously. They feed on decaying plant and animal matter and will pick up bacteria that cause diarreah and food poisioning on their skin. Because their bodies are very flat they are capable of wriggling into sealed cereal boxes, open chip, rice, and flour bags, and open liquid containers where they can deposit these pathogens. The Oriental Roach also reproduces rapidly and can infest a structure within a couple weeks. Contact a qualified pest elimination professional immediately if you have seen an Oriental Roach to prevent a worsening of your infestation.
Brown Banded Roach -  Brown Banded Roaches are among the smallest of the cockroach species. Adults are about 5/8ths of an inch in length and their bodies are marked by two distinctive brown bands running from left to right on the back. This roach requires less water than other roach species and thus roams more freely within structures, often being seen in living rooms and bedrooms.
Brown Banded Roaches are scavengers that live on decaying plant and animal matter. They are particularly troubling for hospitals as they are known to feed on human bodily fluids. In this way they transmit infection from one person to the next. Brown Banded Roaches are also more likely to infest large apartment complexes as their diminished water requirements enable them to travel higher--and further from the underground sewer lines--in the structure than other roach species. Their mobility makes this roach a stubborn pest. In cases where the infestation is severe, an entire apartment building or medical complex with require several treatments.
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Markley's Pest Elimination, Inc. is a family owned and operated business with over 25 years experience specializing in the removal of insect and small rodent infestations for both commercial and residential clients.