How Effective Are Roach Traps You Buy At The Grocery Store?

How effective are roach traps you buy at the grocery store? Research shows that total elimination of cockroaches using traps alone is very, very rare. According to entomologist, Stoy Hedges, who is also...

According to entomologist, Stoy Hedges, who is also Director of Technical Services for Terminix International, "They capture them, but the research shows that total elimination of cockroaches using traps alone is very, very rare. You are not going to kill every cockroach that gets into the trap. But they do help to reduce the population. If you get into a situation where the cockroaches are outbreeding the numbers you are catching, then you will never get rid of them. That is generally the case, so we use traps in combination with other methods. We use baits and residual treatments applied in the cracks and voids to quickly eliminate cockroaches from a facility."

You can also use traps to determine where the heaviest cockroach traffic is. By recording what locations you set your traps at, and keeping track of how many are trapped in each spot, you will have a clearer idea of where most of them might be hiding.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension website at states, "Trapping will reduce the number of cockroaches so continue to use traps in places where you have caught them before. It is almost impossible to get rid of all the cockroaches with traps alone so you will need to use some other control methods, too."

The Ohio State University Extension website says this regarding traps, "Sticky traps have openings at both ends with the inside surface covered with a very sticky adhesive and slow-release food attractant. Properly placed traps, to and from roach hiding and feeding areas, can catch numerous adults and nymphs daily, especially brownbanded and German cockroaches. Traps are best used along with preventative and insecticidal applications to monitor populations. Trapping can determine harborage areas and infestation severity, monitor effectiveness of pesticide applications, and detect any roach population increases which may require additional pesticide treatments."

Place traps in areas where you suspect the most cockroach activity or population. Generally, a main area will be the kitchen. Put traps behind the refrigerator and stove, under cabinets, in dark areas, and in flat areas where both ends of the trap remain clear for access. Other places to trap include near pipes, under sinks, near water heaters, in basements, in bathroom cabinets, behind the toilet and other dark, moist areas.

If any traps stay empty, or nearly empty, move them to areas where you are continually catching cockroaches. Empty full traps and replace. Make sure to check them every few days.

Most likely once you have pinpointed the areas most populated, you will need to use pesticides. You can use a spray or bait, but never in the same areas at the same time. The sprays may repel as well as kill, and if cockroaches just avoid the area, they merely relocate to another place in the home. After chemical treatment, use the traps again to check how successful the pesticide was.
Any large infestations will require a professional, however.

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