Ladyrebecca's Musings and Ramblings

The Increasingly Political Thoughts of Rebecca (Becky) Walker

Cockroaches November 12, 2006

Filed under: Anecdotal — Addicted to Yarn @ 6:48 pm

No, we don’t have roaches.  But I did find out something really horrifying about these unwelcome pests. 
From Wikipedia: 

A 2005 national study on factors that affect asthma in inner-city children shows that cockroach allergens appear to worsen asthma symptoms more than other known triggers. This study, funded by the US National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), is the first large-scale study to rank asthma triggers according to severity.

Additionally, a 2005 research study, sponsored by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), shows a disparity in homeowner knowledge about this link. Only 10% of homeowners nationwide feel that cockroaches are a threat to their family’s health.

Pretty scary, huh?  How about this, also from Wikipedia:

The cockroach is also one of the hardiest insects on the planet, capable of living for a month without food and remaining alive headless for up to a week. It can also hold its breath for 45 minutes and has the ability to slow down its heart rate.

I don’t know abou you all but I will rest easier in my bed tonight knowing that cockroaches will out live us all.  Listen to this…also from Wikipedia:

It is popularly suggested that cockroaches will “inherit the earth” if humanity destroys itself in a nuclear war. Cockroaches do indeed have a much higher radiation resistance than vertebrates, with the lethal dose perhaps 6 to 15 times that for humans. However, they are not exceptionally radiation-resistant compared to other insects, such as the fruit fly [1].

The cockroach’s ability to withstand radiation better than human beings can be explained in terms of the cell cycle. Cells are more vulnerable to effects of radiation when they are dividing. A cockroach’s cells only divide once when in its molting cycle, which at most happens weekly. The cells of the cockroach take roughly 48 hours to complete a molting cycle, which would give time enough for radiation to affect it but not all cockroaches would be molting at the same time. This would mean some would be unaffected by the radiation and thus survive. [2].

So that’s just some information to make us all feel better.  Actually, the fact that we don’t get really big roaches does make me feel better.  The tropics do not appeal to me and the fossil record shows that there were once roaches many times larger than our current “big” cockroaches.

A person who is allergic to consuming shellfish is also likely to have an allergy to eating cockroaches. [6

My response to this is “Why the heck are you eating cockroaches in the first place?  Okay, enough about roaches.  We don’t have them, thank God and hopefully, despite my innate messyness, we won’t ever have them again.  Or at least not as badly as we did in Kansas City.  I shudder at the memory.


4 Responses to “Cockroaches”

  1. CC Says:

    We have roaches, but just smaller ones. They won’t go away. We’ve even had a professional bug killer in to spray them! They can live headless? How is that possible?

  2. Neil-Angie H Says:

    Eeeewww!!! I knew I was right to have an intense phobia about roaches. Thank God we have never had them in this house and hopefully we never will.

  3. Mom Says:

    Well, I wonder if there is any way to superimpose some of those characteristics into humans? Just think of it, we could go to the gillitines in the end times and talk with our heads off for a whole week. We would certainly be able to evangelize more seriously. Furthermore, about this radiation thing. Why do we care if the roaches out live us if we have been nuked? Wouldn’t we have been called home at the appointed time? Love, Your Dad

  4. Becky Says:

    Well, CC, I would guess that they simply don’t use their heads that much. Maybe it takes a week before they have a thought. The thought knock around for awhile before the roach says “hey, I haven’t got no head!” and then he falls over dead.

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