Roach Bait Stations
Cockroaches are never welcome in homes, restaurants or any building. They carry disease and spread bacteria. They come into homes after hanging out in sewers, garbage cans and other nasty places. Once they enter your home, they establish congregation nests and lay eggs at an exponential pace. Infestation begins.
There are several ways to keep cockroaches out of your home. Natural methods include sealing the exterior and interior to prevent their entry. Practicing good sanitation by removing access to roach food supply is another preventative measure. If those methods fail, then consider resorting to low-risk pesticides encased in roach baits.
What Are Roach Baits?
A roach bait comprises three main components. An active insecticide (killing agent), an attractant which entices roaches to the bait, and a container that holds the first two ingredients. The active insecticide is usually a low-volume Fiprol, or Hydramethylnon depending upon the specific bait manufacturer. The container (station) is generally made of plastic or cardboard that is relatively child-resistant.
Don’t confuse “glue traps” with a roach bait. Glue traps are created to trap an unsuspecting roach, spider or insect. A roach bait is armed with a slow-acting insecticide that takes several hours and even days to kill a roach. The purpose is giving the roach adequate time to take the active ingredient back to the nest to infects its buddies.
The bait contains relatively low toxic insecticides that are safe when used as directed. They generally come packaged in sets of 12 baits and sold over the counter at hardware stores and even some grocery stores. They are odor-free and are typically placed where roaches are likely to travel between food sources and where they nest. Name brands include Black Flag, Combat, Maxforce, and Roach Ender types of roach baits.
How Roach Baits Perform
The key strategy of roach baits is enticing roaches to an attractant armed with an effective insecticide that intends a slow kill. The delayed killing action permits the infected roach to return to its nest where it will infect other roaches in the nest. The object is not killing one roach but many.
It sounds rather disgusting but the other roaches will eat the expelled bait in the sputum and feces. Roaches also practice communal cleaning of each other. During the cleaning process, roaches will ingest residue bait. They will also feed on corpses of dead roaches. The transferred toxic ingredient will reach high proportions of cockroach populations to help control infestations in a relatively short period.
An active ingredient is the insecticide. Once consumed by a roach, itself becomes the secondary and most crucial bait since it will return to the main nest(s) where it infects an entire colony of roaches. The amount of insecticide within the bait is very small compared to the volume of the attractant and inert ingredients. Always read the label which will describe the killing agent and usage directions.
A significant low volume of an insecticide is important. If the roach bait contains too much active ingredient versus the food attractant, it would repel the roach before it enters the bait station. The low volume makes it safer for families and pets. The typical active agent in roach baits are those listed on the label and marked CAUTION (signal word) which are pesticides rated the lowest toxicity by the EPA.
Although the insecticide is of relatively low toxicity to humans, the dose is lethal to cockroaches and even some other insects like ants. However, all insecticides are poisonous to a degree and should always kept out of reach of children and pets.
Fipronil. It disrupts the central nervous system of roaches and other insects with both as a contact and stomach digestive action. Death of a roach generally occurs in 6 to 24 hours. Fipronil is found in these brands: Maxforce (R), Combat (R) and Siege(R) brands.
Hydramethylnon. It inhibits mitochondrial energy production which results in death of the roach within 1 to 3 days. After feeding. the roach will begin feeling lethargic symptoms in a matter of hours and progressively quits eating. Hydramethylnon exists in these brands of roach baits: Maxforce (R), Siege (R), Amdo (R), Sensible (R) and Combat (R).
Where To Place Roach Bait Stations
Here’s what we know about nesting habits of roaches. They establish colonies where they feel safe. Often this is within wall voids, under cabinets and other secluded places where people generally cannot get to. They like dark places relatively near food and water sources. They are typically nocturnal, only coming out a night. The few that you may see during the day, may be an indication they have been forced out of a nest due to overcrowding.
Prime locations would be near kitchens and bathrooms. Placing baits under sinks, under refrigerators, behind toilets, beneath dishwashers, under stoves, near trash and garbage containers, and storage areas. You want to place them nearest to where you believe nests may exist. The closer, the better.
Cockroaches will find travel patterns. They’ll follow along walls and they do climb. Therefore, place the baits flush against walls where ceilings meet the floor. Corners are good places. A small quantity of bait in several spots are better than a large number baits in just a few locations. Caution. Do not place them where young children could
easily get to them. Do not spray “direct kill” insecticides near the bait stations or travel areas. Toxic chemicals will tend to repel the roaches away from entering the bait stations.