Controlling Cockroaches Using an Integrated Approach
Controlling cockroaches successfully takes an integrated approach that uses aggressive monitoring, non-chemical intervention, along with pest management products including baits, dusts and liquid residual treatments. Here are some important things to consider when building a cockroach control program.
// UNDERSTAND COCKROACH BEHAVIOUR
Invest in learning the fundamentals of biology and behaviour of target roach species. German cockroaches spend 70-90% of their time in their harborage sites, which are in secretive areas such as cracks and crevices, wall voids, corners of kitchen cupboards and closets, behind appliances, etc. German cockroaches will be found close to food and water. Cooperation from your customers to address structural deficiencies, leaky pipes and faucets, and improving sanitation through minimizing food left out in the open, will make control efforts that you implement more successful.
// DON’T OVERESTIMATE BAIT ATTRACTION
Bait advertising touts the attractiveness of bait formulations. However, a bait cannot be attractive if it is placed outside of the sensory range of a PMP’s targets. It’s important for a PMP to remember the biological limits of his/her targets. In most cases German cockroaches do not forage more than a few inches for food. Bait needs to be applied directly into or as close to their harborage sites as possible. The goal is to have target roaches find baits before they find competing foods as they forage.
// LOCATE HARBORAGE SITES
Execute an aggressive inspection and monitoring program and maintain it continually. Cockroaches typically harbor in microenvironments that are dark, humid and in close proximity to food. Utilize monitor traps to provide information about activity, trends in population growth or decline, and indicators of new introductions/activity. Place sufficient numbers of monitors and maintain or replace them as necessary. Use monitors for positive identification of species. If you discover large pockets of roaches, use a professional vacuum with a hepa filter to help crash some of the population prior to treatment.
// APPLY APPROPRIATE AMOUNTS OF BAIT
Start with label directions. Determine the area of the zone (e.g., kitchen sinks and attached cabinets) to provide a limit on the total bait allowed to be placed in the area. Apply the minimum amount of bait that corresponds to the size of the population as determined by inspection and trap counts. Be prepared to return in a short period of time (one week or less) for potential re-baiting if the population is high. The treatment site is critical to the overall management strategy, especially if the account is complaining of activity. If old, dried-out bait is present, remove it if possible. Proper baiting can be time consuming. Be prepared to invest the time up front. Recent research at North Carolina State University demonstrated a high degree of efficacy in baiting when the treatments were conducted thoroughly to all areas of the residences where cockroaches were found or suspected. In this research, technicians spent on average 30-45 minutes per townhouse or apartment and applied roughly 200 bait placements per unit.
Bayer has been a leader in researching cockroach baits for over 25 years. One of the key features that Bayer tests for in developing baits is the secondary toxicity (transferability of the bait to other roaches through feces) of the material, which is referred to as the Maxforce® Domino effect. Both Maxforce® Impact® (containing clothianidin) and Maxforce Roach (containing hydramethylnon) have excellent secondary toxicity, which is among the most important attributes of a cockroach bait.
Another important attribute of an effective bait is palatability. Bayer’s most recent introduction, Maxforce Impact, was designed to be effective on bait-averse and normal strains of German cockroaches. It also controls all other major species of cockroaches and can be used indoors and on exterior surfaces. Its unique formulation has more complex carbohydrates along with a feeding stimulant (blue bead technology) and has been shown to increase bait consumption by over 20 percent.
Dusts can be a very useful tool to treat deep harbourage voids such as wall voids. Drione® Dust offers both quick knockdown (containing 1% pyrethrin) along with extended residual control (resulting from the 40% silica gel component in the formulation) and lasts for up to six months when applied in voids or cracks and crevices. Dusts are an important tool that can complement a baiting program but must be applied properly and according to label directions. Investing time into training technicians on proper dusting techniques and routinely reviewing current product label prior to application will help to ensure that this important tool remains in the toolbox.
Liquid Residual Insecticide
There are times when liquid residuals are needed in difficult accounts to help get a roach problem under control. Temprid™ SC is the best option in these situations, as it contains two active ingredients (a group 3 and group 4 insecticide), offering completely different modes of action. Temprid SC is effective on pyrethroid-resistant strains of roaches. It works quickly and lasts long. Temprid SC is registered for 20 pests and has a very flexible label. It can be used as a crack and crevice, spot, or void treatment or a perimeter spray. Temprid is also registered for foaming and misting in voids, which can be particularly helpful in treating for roaches.
ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW PESTICIDE LABEL DIRECTIONS. Bayer, the Bayer Cross, Maxforce® Impact®, Maxforce® Roach, Drione® and Temprid™ SC are trademarks of Bayer Group. Used under license. Bayer CropScience Inc. is a member of CropLife Canada. ©2022 Bayer Group. All rights reserved.