Beetles and Cockroaches
Carpet Beetles. Click on images to enlarge. An Oriental Cockroach

The most common Beetle infestations we deal with in Michigan are Carpet Beetles and Box Elder Beetles.

Carpet Beetles are commonly found nesting in soft fibrous material. Carpets, clothing, furs, and the like. They are very small and can range in size from 1–12 mm. Key characteristics for adults are oval shaped bodies with clubbed antennae. They breed and multiply quickly and are commonly attracted to areas where food spills have not been cleaned.

Box Elder Beetles are a black and red slow moving beetle that is commonly found in warm sunny spots around the house. They rarely fly away when approached. In Autumn the adult insects seek warmer hibernating location, which can lead them under siding and into wall voids in homes. They remain inactive inside the walls while the weather is cool. They are sometime awoken by heating systems inside. When this occurs they make their way inside and resume activity within the home.

The three most common types of Cockroach we deal with are the German Cockroach, the Brown Banded Cockroach, and the Oriental Cockroach. The largest threat regarding cockroaches is that of disease. According to The National Pest Management Association, Cockroaches have been found to carry 33 kinds of bacteria, six kinds of parasitic worms, and at least seven other kinds of human pathogens. They can pick up germs on the spines of their legs and bodies as they crawl through decaying matter or sewage and then carry these into food or onto food surfaces.

German Cockroaches are small (1/2 an inch or so) and can range from tan through brown to almost black, and has two dark parallel streaks running from the head to the base of the wings. Though they have wings they cannot fly. The German cockroach is one of the most common household cockroaches and are particularly fond of inhabiting restaurants, kitchens, hotels, and nursing homes.

Brown Banded Cockroaches are light brown with two light-colored bands across the wings and abdomen. Because they need less moisture than the German cockroach they can be found distributed throughout the house, including bedrooms and restrooms. They avoid light so they are most commonly found at night, usually scattering when an unsuspecting homeowner turns a light on.

Oriental Cockroaches (also called Waterbugs) are a large species of cockroaches (about 1 inch in length) that prefer dark, moist places. They are one of the most challenging cockroaches to get rid of when they infest a home for a few reasons. The first is that they inhabit dark areas are are not commonly seen until infestation has reached a critical level. The second reason they are hard to eliminate is their sheer size. The larger the bug the more pesticide required to kill them. All of these factors in combination with their quick breeding habits, they tend to be quite challenging to rid a home of.

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