The German cockroach is the most common of cockroaches found throughout the United States. The German cockroach is light brown with two parallel stripes located just behind their heads that reaches down their body. They are oval in shape, have six legs, a long antenna and are approximately 1⁄2". They can fit through small openings. They are fast breeders and can produce up to six generations per year.
They like to hide in dark, warm, moist, humid places close to food and have been known to eat just about anything. (breads, sweets, meats, starches, gravies, soap, toothpaste, glue and almost any other human or pet food). They can't go more than a couple of weeks without moisture but can go without eating for up to a month. They find their way into homes and restaurant kitchens by hitching a ride on packaged goods, grocery bags and cardboard boxes. They love a sink full of dirty dishes, food spills on counters, floors, an open bag of chips or dog food. One hundred cockroaches can survive on as little as a dimes worth of spilled oil for over a month.
These cockroaches pick up parasitic worms, bacteria, and other pathogens while crawling through decaying matter in sewerage lines and spread them on to food or surfaces. They've been linked to illness outbreaks, cause allergic reactions in some and can exacerbate asthma.
Good sanitation plays an important role in preventing cockroaches. Clean up after you eat. Wash dishes, pots and pans and flat wear. Or rinse dishes of all food and place in dish washer (yes, they can find food on dishes in there). Make sure you ventilate under sinks and seal areas around pipes.