You’re standing in the kitchen minding your own business and out of the corner of your eye you spot an intruder. As you turn your head in an attempt to verify his exact location, he takes off across the floor heading for the refrigerator. You lunge with your foot, determined to squash the life out him. “Got ‘im!” you shout. You lift your foot, expecting to find a mess of cockroach residue, but as soon as you move, he scurries out in the opposite direction.
As you turn to launch a counter attack, he makes a run for the cabinets and just seems to disappear. You’ve definitely wounded him, but now you’re frustrated. You can’t understand it. Just when you thought you were rid of them, another one shows up to taunt you. What are you going to do?
Why doesn’t the old way work, and what about those cost savings?
There are some very simple reasons why spraying only exposed surfaces does not work. Let’s consider a strip of baseboard for example. Baseboard is usually made of wood or vinyl. It’s there to hide the uneven space between the wallboard and flooring, and to give it a finished appearance. It creates a perfect, protected space for roaches to run BEHIND. If you spray the FRONT of the baseboard, the roaches, who are hiding BEHIND the baseboard, couldn’t care less.
Do you remember my telling you that the process you’d be learning would be safer and would reduce the amount of insecticide you use? The reason for this is simple, using insecticides for crack and crevice application has allowed you to change your emphasis from spraying all over the counters, walls, and floors (the places where YOU live) to spraying narrow cracks, crevices, and wall voids (the places where THEY live).
Powders, and baits, and traps… Oh, my!
POWDERS, or dusts, are primarily applied for residual kill. They can contain any of several ingredients, the most common being boric acid. Powders are extremely useful in dry areas of the home and should be applied in a thin layer rather than a big pile. Roaches will shy away from big piles of powder, but they’ll walk right through a thin layer of dust. When the roach crawls through the dust, some of the dust will remain on their bodies, and because roaches groom themselves like cats, they’ll ingest some of it when they clean themselves. In addition, there are some dusts that act as a desiccant, which means that the dust actually damages the protective covering on the insects’ body and causes dehydration.
I am always skeptical when I’m told that a home has a problem with control because of a resistant population. Upon investigation I have always found that the only treatments being performed were surface treatments and/ or the placement of a few bait trays. The roaches weren’t immune; they were never contacted with insecticide!
Most of what I learned in the months and years that followed is contained in the pages of this book. And even though I completed studies in Pest Control Management from Purdue University, attended various seminars, and did extensive research into structural pest control, it was the hands-on experience with Pat Hughes that made the biggest impression on me.
Iaccino, Jimmy (2014-03-14). Never Give A Cockroach An Even Break! (Kindle Locations 346-348). anakrino publishing. Kindle Edition.