Four Wild Facts That Illustrate Why Roaches Are So Hard To Kill

Posted on: 29 May 2015

What's harder than having a home full of disgusting cockroaches? Trying to get them out!. Have you ever wondered why? Here are four reasons that explain why cockroaches are so difficult to eliminate. Understanding these points should give you a deeper insight into these vermin.

Cockroaches are Very, Very Old

Sharks and alligators are among the oldest living species on Earth and have remained virtually unchanged since the time of the dinosaurs. While these creatures are old, they've got nothing on the cockroach, because these pests are one of the world's oldest species.

How old are cockroaches? Just 350 million years old. That kind of number can be hard to comprehend without a comparison: cockroaches were around 150 million years before the very first dinosaurs. That's right: they've survived multiple mass extinctions and exist in a form that has changed very little throughout the eons.

They Possess Pavlov's Response

In a recent test on cockroach intelligence, Japanese researchers made a shocking discovery: cockroaches possess the Pavlov response. The scientists fed cockroaches a sugary solution with a very distinct smell. When they fed the roaches, they drooled in anticipation of the food. Later, the scientists exposed the roaches to the odor without the food. And just like in Pavlov's original experiment, the roaches drooled.

What's the big deal about a few drops of insect drool? Plenty: it proves that, unlike many other insects, cockroaches possess memory. That memory is likely used to memorize food locations, hiding spots, and secret paths within your walls.

Self-Awareness May Be a Reality

Watching cockroaches skillfully avoid the bottom of your shoe makes it hard to believe that they don't possess a higher form of intelligence. Well, recent research has shown that cockroaches may not just be intelligent, but that they may be self-aware.

A neurobiologist at the University of Arizona spent 35-years studying the brain structures of various insects and found that roaches have, exponentially, the largest insect brain. Their one million brain cells dwarf the 250,000 of the average fruit fly. In fact, this scientist has declared that roaches posses the "most sophisticated brains on this planet," brains that may make consciousness and self-awareness possible.

"Smart Legs" Help Them Survive

While it's definitely unnerving to know that cockroaches are ancient beings that may check themselves out in a mirror, that's just the tip of the iceberg. Cockroaches not only possess the largest and most complex brain in the insect world, but also the best set of legs.

Scientists studying cockroach legs have found they adapt to rough terrain almost instantaneously. For example, roach legs make it possible for them to quickly run up the side of a hill without stopping or adjusting their stride. These changes happen so quickly that there's little chance that the roaches are consciously manipulating them.

Understanding these facts should help ease your mind about the difficulty of eliminating roaches from your home. After all, how can you deal with a 350 million year-old, possibly self-aware, creature with legs smarter than most robots? Contact a local pest control company, like Heritage Pest Control, for more information or ideas.


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