Cockroaches are one of the most successful animals to evolve – they have survived for millions of years and there are some 3,500 different species. About 25 are found close to humans. The 2 most common types in the UK is the German cockroach (blattela germanica) and the oriental cockroach (blatta orientalis).

The German cockroach is about 10mm to 15mm long and are yellowish brown. They are active mostly during darkness and live close to the source of food. During the day, they may hide in cracks and crevices where it is warm. They will eat almost anything and live together in large groups. The eggs are laid in a capsule containing between 30 and 40 eggs. From the egg to adult will typically take about six months.

The Oriental cockroach is commonly found in kitchens, restaurants, hotels and are bigger than the German cockroach at about 20mm to 25mm long. The adults are shiny and almost black in colour. The egg capsule contains about 15 eggs.

Both species can transmit salmonella and other infectious diseases, they contaminate and spoil food with their smell.