Survey puts Austin among other southern cities with roach problems

Austin is known for its growing population, but unfortunately, it's not just the human population. A new report from The Census Bureau says roaches are becoming a big problem.

Salila Travers has been running her pest control business for 34 years. During all that time, she has come to a conclusion about one of Austin's biggest nuisances.

"There are lots of roaches, the big roaches that come from outside mostly," Travers.

The report from Bloomberg Business shows the results from The U.S. Census Bureau's American Housing Survey. It says nearly 30 percent of homes in Austin have some evidence of roaches. Tampa, Florida comes in at number one. Travers says based on her experience, she's not surprised.

"It's hot and moist here a lot of the time. That's the perfect formula for a lot of insects," said Travers.

City officials say the roaches have some company.

"We receive many calls regarding bed bugs, roaches, rodents, that is something that is very common," said Matthew Noriega, Assistant Division Manager, Austin Code Department.

"We're having tons of rodents this year," said Travers.

So why would those pesky pests love Austin so much? Professionals say it's simply the climate.

"Last year it wasn't bad because it was cold and very dry. What promotes insect reproduction is heat and moisture," said Travers.

You don't have to lose the battle. There are things you can do to make it through the summer, bug and mouse free.

"Try to seal the trim, try to seal the openings that may lead to the outside," said Noriega.

City officials say it will take teamwork to prevent the Austin metropolis from becoming Cockroachopolis.

Checkout these tips from the EPA to prevent roach parties.

Starve them out...

  • Clean up spills and crumbs right away.
  • Don't leave open bags of food or candy lying around.
  • Eat at the table instead of walking around the house with food.
  • Clean your dirty dishes right away.
  • Keep a tight lid on trash and empty it often.
  • Don't leave pet food out overnight.

Dry them out...

  • Remember to turn off the water after you brush your teeth.
  • Wipe water off the counters when you see it.
  • Drain dishwater out of the sink.
  • Report leaky faucets, radiators, dishwashers, and washing machines.

Keep them out...

  • Check things like boxes and bags for roaches before bringing them into the house.
  • Get rid of stacks of newspapers paper bags, and cardboard boxes.
  • Seal up cracks or openings around baseboards and behind kitchen and bathroom counters.