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Pest control methods for cockroaches vary according to the type of
cockroach. For all types of cockroaches, the infection can be controlled
by removing all sources of food and water. All food should be kept
in air tight containers and there should be no food scraps, especially at
night. All areas should be kept clean and sealed, so that they
cannot find shelter. Since cockroaches need water, all leaking taps should
be fixed and there should be no moist areas. Cardboard boxes should be
kept above ground level.
Fumigating sprays used by professional pest control services are a common way to control cockroaches. However, these contain synthetic pesticides and can be harmful to human beings and the environment. They often have a strong smell and the house cannot be used for several hours after treatment. After sometime , the cockroaches become immune to these sprays. Baits containing an insect growth regulator (IGR) prevent further growth of the cockroach and are less toxic to human beings, but these are expensive.
Boric acid is used for killing cockroaches and can be the most effective way of pest control, if it is used properly. Boric acid is harmless to human beings and pets. It can be purchased at chemist and grocery shops and is also used on carrom boards and in foodgrains . A thin layer of dry boric acid should be spread on areas frequented by cockroaches. The tiny particles of boric acid stick to the cockroaches body and are swallowed by the cockroach when it cleans its body. Boric acid acts as a stomach poison for cockroaches , but it may take several weeks to become effective. During the rainy season, the moisture in the air (relative humidity is more than 80%) is high and boric acid is not very effective for killing cockroaches. Soapy water also kills cockroaches.
Natural cockroach control methods use other insects and animals who feed on cockroaches . Spiders eat smaller cockroaches. Household lizards (gecko) feed all sizes of cockroaches and are very effective for controlling cockroaches. They are the cheapest way of killing cockroaches naturally. Lizards are mostly harmless to human beings. Sometimes they automatically find their way into the house, can be caught from the wilds or otherwise they can be purchased at a pet shop. Sometimes lizards may find it difficult to kill large cockroaches. Using House geckos for control of cockroaches
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