Cockroaches will soon be Impossible to Kill with Chemical Pesticides

An ominous new study has found that Cockroaches will soon be impossible to kill with standard pesticides, as they can develop cross-resistance to poisons they’ve never encountered within a single generation.

German cockroaches – the small, quick-scurrying type whose traces can be found in 85% of US urban homes – are rapidly becoming impervious to pesticide chemicals, developing cross-resistance to a variety of insecticides within a single generation, a study published in Scientific Reports has demonstrated.

And even the researchers who conducted the experiment are creeped out by the evolutionary capabilities of the ubiquitous six-legged natural cleaners.

Michael Scharf, chair of the Entomology Department at Purdue University and co-author of the study, said in a statement last week. “Cockroaches developing resistance to multiple classes of insecticides at once will make controlling these “pests” almost impossible with chemicals alone.”

One experiment in which 10% of cockroaches started off resistant to a particular pesticide actually saw populations grow over the six months during which the researchers sprayed, a disconcerting result in itself.

But it was the multi-chemical experimental groups that really caused a stir – cockroaches who survived treatment with one insecticide developed immunity not just to that chemical, but to other chemicals they hadn’t even been exposed to – increasing their resistance “four- to six-fold in just one generation,” Scharf marveled.

Cockroach populations targeted with multiple chemicals also tended to spread out, infesting adjacent apartments to those being tested – so not only did total population numbers not decrease as they were expected to, but entire buildings fell to six-legged armies that were once content with smaller domains.

Female German cockroaches may lay up to 400 eggs in a lifetime, and the insects’ 60-day lifespan makes for a quick-evolving species. They thrive in human habitats – particularly where food is left behind – and rely on humans for shelter in cold climates.

They also have wings – but at least the humans can take some small comfort in knowing the speciesvery rarely flies,” according to Orkin?

RT Science / Crickey Amigu di Natura Foundation News 2019.

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