It’s enough to make your skin crawl just hearing the word “roach.” Unfortunately, even our beautiful Vancouver Island isn’t immune to the presence of cockroaches. This blog post explores the unique challenges of dealing with cockroach infestations on Vancouver Island, specifically in major cities like Victoria and Nanaimo. We’ll also delve into the pros and cons of using cockroach bombs and discuss the reasons they are not the right choice for every cockroach infestation. 

Are there cockroaches in Victoria BC? Do cockroaches live on Vancouver Island?

Yes, unfortunately cockroaches have made their way to Vancouver Island. They are not native to the island and do not thrive outdoors. Instead you will find them living indoors coexisting with humans. The European German cockroach is the most common species found on the island, particularly in our cities: Victoria and Nanaimo.

Pest Profile: German Cockroach

  • Scientific Name: Blattella germanica
  • Appearance: The German cockroach is a small species, typically ranging from 1 to 1.5 cm in length. It is light brown to tan in colour and has two distinctive parallel dark stripes running down its pronotum (the plate-like structure behind the head).
  • Habitat: German cockroaches thrive in warm and humid environments, making human dwellings an ideal habitat. They are commonly found in kitchens, bathrooms, and other areas with access to food, water, and shelter. These roaches are adept at hiding in cracks, crevices, and small spaces.
  • Reproduction: Known for their rapid reproduction, a single pair of German cockroaches can produce thousands of offspring in a year.
  • Diet: German cockroaches are omnivorous and feed on a wide range of organic matter. They are particularly attracted to starchy and sugary foods, as well as grease. Their scavenging nature makes them adaptable to various environments and food sources.
  • Health Concerns: Cockroaches are known vectors for pathogens, including bacteria and viruses, which can be transmitted to humans through contact with contaminated surfaces or food. Their presence in homes and businesses can pose health risks, especially for individuals with respiratory conditions.

German cockroach

What attracts cockroaches? Why do I have cockroaches in my home?

Cockroaches are attracted to environments that provide them with the essential elements for survival including: 

  • Food Sources: Cockroaches aren’t picky eaters and will consume a wide range of foods. They are particularly attracted to starchy, sugary, and greasy foods. Crumbs, spills, and improperly stored food are enticing to cockroaches.
  • Water: Just like all creatures cockroaches need water to survive. Leaky pipes, dripping faucets, and standing water in trays under houseplants can all create attractive conditions for cockroaches.
  • Shelter: Cockroaches prefer dark, secluded spaces where they can hide during the day. Clutter, cardboard boxes, and cracks or crevices in walls and furniture provide ideal hiding spots.
  • Trash: Garbage bins and compost piles can quickly become an all-you-can-eat buffet for cockroaches! Proper waste management and keeping trash bins sealed can help reduce the attraction.
  • Pet Food: Leftover pet food or spills around pet feeding areas can attract cockroaches. Ensuring that pet food is stored in sealed containers and spills are cleaned up promptly is essential.

To minimize the risk of a cockroach infestation, it’s essential to practice good sanitation, address water leaks promptly, eliminate hiding places, and employ pest prevention measures such as sealing entry points. Regular cleaning and maintenance can go a long way in deterring cockroaches from establishing a presence in your living or working space.

What is a cockroach bomb?

A cockroach bomb, also known as a cockroach fogger or bug bomb, is a type of insecticide product designed to poison cockroaches in an enclosed space. These devices typically come in the form of pressurized cans or aerosol foggers that release a pesticide mist into the air. The mist settles on surfaces making them toxic to cockroaches. 

Is using a cockroach bomb safe?

Put simply, no cockroach bombs are not safe. Just because they are easily accessible at hardware stores does not mean they are safe to use in your home. The insecticide that is sprayed from cockroach bombs is extremely toxic not just to insects but also to humans and pets. If you are going to use a cockroach bomb in your home make sure to closely follow the safety protocols outlined on the label. Make sure the area is evacuated during the treatment, properly air out the area after the treatment and thoroughly clean all surfaces before allowing children and pets back into the area. 

Cockroach Fogger

Pros & Cons of cockroach bombs:

A cockroach bomb is best used as the first step in eliminating a heavy cockroach infestation. This is because cockroach bombs are best at eliminating a large number of cockroaches out in the open. When cockroaches hide in tiny crooks and crannies (as they often do in the early stages of an infestation) it is difficult for the toxic spray of a bomb to reach them. For this reason, they are not the right choice for the vast majority of Canadian homeowners. If you have spotted only one or two cockroaches in your home, unfortunately, a cockroach bomb has a very low chance of resolving your issue. – Learn more about how to get rid of cockroaches 


  • Convenience: Cockroach bombs are readily available at most hardware stores and supermarkets. They provide a quick and seemingly easy solution for homeowners looking to address a cockroach problem.
  • Cost-Effective: Cockroach bombs are relatively inexpensive.


  • Incomplete Extermination: Cockroach bombs often do not eliminate all cockroaches in a home. Cockroaches often hide in areas inaccessible to the insecticide.
  • Health Risks: The insecticides used in cockroach bombs can cause health issues in humans and pets. Exposure to these chemicals may result in respiratory issues, skin irritation and more.
  • Risk of Fire Hazards: Cockroach bombs are flammable, and improper use can cause fires.
  • Required Training: Without a proper understanding of cockroach behaviour and biology, homeowners often do not deploy the bomb in an effective position.

Why choose professional pest control

While cockroach bombs claim to offer a quick fix to a stressful issue, in reality, they are not a good option for most infestations. Instead, it’s best to leave cockroach extermination to the professionals. Cockroaches are notoriously resilient, frequently surviving mutilation, starvation and even radiation! The fastest and safest approach to dealing with a cockroach infestation is to seek professional pest control services. 

Get rid of cockroaches quickly! Old Island Pest Control offers pest management and exterminator services for both residential and commercial properties. We have local cockroach exterminators at locations across Vancouver Island, including Duncan, Nanaimo, Parksville & Qualicum, Courtenay, Victoria and Campbell River. Call us today to learn how we can help.