Thursday, March 17, 2011

Do Cockroaches deserve the good press they've recieved?

Recently cockroaches have been seen in the news in a positive light when a popular zoo offered on valentines day to let you name a cockroach after your sweetheart for a fee. This sparked a rash of news stories about the little buggers to the point where one might even say we (the public) have developed a soft spot for the previously notorious creatures. What's the real story? Has the long standing hatred of cockroaches been deserved. Are we weary for a reason or should we go with the low and allow the cockroach to be absolved of it's  public enemy status.
According to a well known university entomologist the cockroach is a carrier of more than 50 bacterias and diseases. It is also a forager which means it randomly scours surfaces looking for anything and everything it can find to eat. Cockroaches can be found in abundance wherever unsanitary conditions exist such as garbage bins. They make their way into restaurants and grocery stores through cracks and crevices and then find their way into grocery bags and other packaging materials. This is the number one way cockroaches spread into homes. Cockroaches pick up various  pathogens on their travels through rubbish. These pathogens adhere to their legs and are spread as they crawl across counter tops, tables and other surfaces in the home. So maybe a cockroach can't be blamed for direct transmission of disease. But anyone who eats a sandwich that 's been placed on a counter top, on which only hours before these disease carrying insects had scurried, may find themselves eating food poisoning organisms such as salmonella, e-coli and even typhoid. As for cockroaches and whether or not their nasty reputation is deserved. It's your call.

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