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Cockroach killer mystery

  1. Aug 23, 2014 #1
    Empty a can of Vienna Sausages, except for the broth that remains. Leave it out, in the upright position, for your cockroaches. You will find that they crawl into the can and die, and so many victims there are. The question is why. They apparently do not attempt to crawl out because there are none dead on their backs. They're all face down. I looked at the ingredients: meat products, spices, and sodium nitrite. I don't know why it works but it's a great discovery!
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 23, 2014 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    How did you discover this?

    It looks like the roaches are attracted to the can contents - so either they get stuck and drown or there is something in the tins that is toxic to them. (Or someone is playing a joke.)

    Sodium Nitrite is toxic.
    Maybe it contains salt or some other preservative in high-ish quantities?

    What are the "spices"?
    Could there be an undeclared preservative in there too?
    Is the food acidic? Do they use an acidity regulator?
    Does it work with all brands or are some better than others?
    Is the experiment repeatable?

    I think there are too many variables to tell.
  4. Aug 23, 2014 #3


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    The way you describe the situation,
    This would be the way the tar pits worked.
  5. Aug 24, 2014 #4


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    Intelligence is not the most endearing trait of roaches. But, they do the 'be fruitful and multiply' thing with great efficiency. My guess is they get a lethal dose of sodium compounds from the sausages.
  6. Aug 24, 2014 #5


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    It's an intriguing discovery, certainly. This seems to have a big advantage over conventional poisons---the victims of Vienna Sausages presumably being safe to feed to birds and lizards! http://imageshack.com/a/img29/6853/xn4n.gif [Broken]

    I might give it a try next summer.

    Does it also work on mice & rats, have you noticed? :tongue2:
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
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