Director: David Fiess, MPA Phone: (260) 449-7459 FAX: (260) 449-7460 Email:
Location: 2242 Carroll Rd, Fort Wayne, IN 46818 Hours: 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 to 4:30 p.m., Monday - Friday
Meet the Staff: Josh Blauvelt, BS, CHHS, Asst. Director; Tom McCue, BS, Env. Health Specialist II; Francis Koch, Env.Technician; Trina Riecke, Lead Case Manager; Cindy Wable, Lead Case Coordinator/Env. Technician; Pat De Haven, Secretary Seasonal Mosquito Technicians


Cockroaches have been around since the age of dinosaurs.  These winged insects are capable of contaminating food and surfaces with various diseases and can contribute to asthma conditions with their droppings, body parts, and secretions.  Cockroaches can squeeze into cracks and crevices as thin as a quarter.  They are found where there is food, water, and shelter, as in kitchens and bathrooms.

There are three cockroach species that may be identified in your home.  The German cockroach is the most common.  It is about a half-inch long, tan, and normally found in kitchens.  The Oriental cockroach is about one inch long, black or dark brown, and prefers to live in sewers.  It may enter your home through broken sewer pipes.  The American cockroach is the largest of the three roaches at one and a half inches long, reddish-brown, and prefers food establishments.

German Cockroach CDC pic



Oriental Cockroach CDC pic

American Cockroach CDC pic

German Cockroach

Oriental Cockroach

American Cockroach



Integrated Pest Management (IPM) should be used to control cockroaches.  IPM is an effective and environmentally sensitive approach to pest management that relies on a combination of common-sense practices, such as sanitation, exclusion, trapping, and applying low-toxicity, low-risk pesticides only as necessary.

To control cockroaches, you need to remove their food, water and shelter in your home.  If you buy food or other products in bulk, you should inspect the boxes before bringing them into your home.  Cockroaches can hide in the corners of the box and within the cardboard siding.


  • Store grains and cereals in plastic containers with lids.
  • Clean up spilled food and drink.
  • Put all trash into a container with a lid.


  • Fix any leaking pipes or faucets.
  • Run the garbage disposal regularly.
  • Remove any puddles in bathrooms or basements.


  • Remove any clutter or unnecessary boxes.
  • Screen vents or pipes that lead outside.
  • Seal cracks and crevices along baseboards, behind sinks, and around windows.  Seal around the water and waste pipes under sinks.

Trapping and Baiting

Use glue traps, bait stations or gel bait to catch and kill cockroaches.  Sprays and fogs may kill a few cockroaches, but the survivors will move on to the next room or apartment (if in a multi-unit building).  Glue traps will help monitor how many cockroaches are present.  Bait stations protect children and pets from accessing the poison.  Gel baits can be placed into cracks and crevices.  The cockroaches eat the bait, go to where other cockroaches gather, and die.  The other cockroaches will eat the dead cockroach and die.  This may occur over several generations of cockroaches.

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Photo Gallery

Click thumbnail to see large image.
  • Trina Riecke, Lead Case Manager, conducts a developmental assessment of a lead-poisoned child.
  • Lucky the Lead Free Lemur is a mascot of the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program.  He appears at health fairs and other events to promote lead prevention.
  • This engorged American Dog Tick was pulled off a human.  To prevent tick attachment, wear light-colored clothing, long pants with the bottoms placed into the top of socks, and apply a DEET-product to your clothing.  Check your clothing and body after exiting a high grass or wooded area.
  • De-rimmed tires breed mosquitoes and can provide drinking water for rats.  Culex species, ones that can carry WNv, and Ae. triseriatus, carrier of LaCrosse Encephalitis, use tires as a habitat when in the larval form.  The sun heats the black rubber allowing for increased mosquito production, even when it is cool out.  Tires should be properly disposed of or covered to prevent mosquito breeding.
  • A female Culex mosquito laying an egg raft, which can consist of 200-300 eggs.
  • A blood sample to be tested for lead is taken from a capillary in the tip of the finger.
  • Mold needs water to grow.  Remove the water source and there won't be a mold problem.
  • The American dog tick is the largest tick in Indiana and can carry Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.
  • Children enjoy meeting Lucky the Lead Free Lemur.
  • Sticky traps are a great tool to catch cockroaches.
  • Trina Riecke educates a citizen about how to maintain a healthy and safe home.
  • Rats like to eat grease, as can be seen in the pan on the stove.
  • Educating the public on Vector-borne diseases is an on-going effort.
  • Ae. triseriatus, a carrier of LaCrosse Encephalitis, lays her eggs in treeholes and containers.
  • Mosquito larvae
  • Cockroach infestation in kitchen cabinet.
  • Mosquitofish can be placed into ornamental ponds to eat mosquito larvae.  The fish only get to be an inch in length.
  • Un-maintained swimming pools are perfect for breeding the mosquitoes that can carry West Nile virus.
  • Double whammy for mosquito breeding - uncovered boat with un-rimmed tire in it.
  • Notice the pop can the rats tried pulling into a burrow.
  • This rat ate poison bait stored in a secure station.
  • Bed bugs do not transmit diseases, but their bites can become infected if scratched too much.
  • Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Free radon test kits are available at the Fort Wayne-Allen County Department of Health.
  • Ingredients taken from a meth lab that was found in a house.
Did You Know?

Lead poisoning is suspected to have played a role in the fall of the Roman Empire.