Does Cardboard Attract Cockroaches [Yes, But How?]

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One of the most common household pests is cockroaches, and people are always looking for ways to get rid of them. One question that often comes up in my mind is, does Cardboard Attract Cockroaches?

Yes, cardboard can attract cockroaches. According to ASTMH cockroaches like cardboard for several reasons, including the fact that it is warm and damp, which makes it a good place for them to nest and have babies.

In this article, we’ll investigate the connection between cardboard and cockroaches and attempt to answer the question conclusively. So, get ready to learn more about these annoying pests and why they like cardboard.

Why Do Cockroaches Like Cardboard?

There are many reasons why cockroaches like cardboard. Here are some of the main reasons why cockroaches want to live in cardboard:

Warmth And WetnessCockroaches like warm and damp places, so cardboard is a great place for them to live. Cardboard fibers can hold onto water, and the enclosed space inside a cardboard box can make it warm and humid.
PorosityCardboard is made of a porous material, which means it soaks up and holds on to smells and other things. Cockroaches are drawn to the smells of food and other organic substances and can smell them even if we can’t see them.
Food SourceCockroaches can eat crumbs or other leftovers in cardboard boxes used to store food or other organic materials. Cockroaches can live off of even small amounts of food.
ShelterCockroaches need places to hide and have babies. Cardboard boxes are perfect for this. Most cardboard boxes have cracks and corners where cockroaches can hide and lay eggs

Can Cockroaches Survive In Cardboard Boxes?

Yes, cockroaches can survive in cardboard boxes, especially if food crumbs or other organic matter is inside. Cockroaches are known to be very flexible and able to live in many different places.

They can live without food for a long time, and in small spaces, so cardboard boxes are a good place to live. Cockroaches can also get moisture and a place to live from porous cardboard boxes.

If you think you have cockroaches in your house, you should take steps to get rid of them because they can spread disease and make people sick. You can start by removing any cardboard boxes and cleaning up any food crumbs or spills.

Do Cockroaches Like To Eat Cardboard?

Yes, cockroaches can eat cardboard. It is plant-based materials like cellulose and lignin, which cockroaches can eat. Cockroaches are opportunistic feeders that will consume almost anything, including cardboard and other paper products. In urban areas, cardboard and paper products are some of the most common things that cockroaches eat.

Cockroaches are attracted to cardboard because it can be a source of food for them and provide a safe and humid place for them to live. When cardboard gets wet, it can become a place where bacteria and mold growth, which cockroaches can eat.

Can Cockroaches Gnaw Through Cardboard?

Yes, cockroaches can gnaw through cardboard. Cockroaches eat almost anything they can find, including cardboard. In fact, some of the most common things that cockroaches eat are cardboard and paper products.

Cockroaches have strong jaws that can chew through many things, including cardboard. These teeth are made to cut and grind food, but they can also break through barriers to get to food, water, or a safe place to stay.

Cardboard is a soft material that cockroaches can easily break apart with their mandibles. This lets them get to any food or shelter that might be inside. 

Does The Type Of Cardboard Matter When It Comes To Attracting Cockroaches?

Whether or not cockroaches attract to cardboard depends on what kind of cardboard it is. Cockroaches are drawn to cardboard as it gives them food and a place to live. However, the level of attractiveness can vary depending on the type of cardboard.

Corrugated cardboard is more attractive to cockroaches than other types of cardboard because it has more glue and starch than other types of cardboard. This glue and starch can become food for cockroaches, making it more appealing to them.

Cockroaches may be less interested in plain cardboard that doesn’t have any glue or starch on it. But cockroaches can still eat the cardboard if it gets dirty with food or other organic matter.

Types Of Cardboards Attract Cockroaches 

Generally, cockroaches are attracted to cardboard that contains glue, starch, or other organic matter that can serve as a food source. Types of cardboard that  attract cockroaches are listed below:

Corrugated Cardboard
This kind of cardboard has more than one layer, and the middle layer is corrugated. It is commonly used for shipping boxes and is known to attract cockroaches due to the glue and starch.

Pizza Boxes
Cockroaches love these cardboard boxes because they are often full of food scraps and grease, which makes them an easy target.

Egg Cartons
Cockroaches are drawn to the glue that holds the egg cartons together and any leftover egg matter.

Food Storage Boxes
These cardboard boxes can get dirty with food, making them attractive to cockroaches.

Recycling Cardboard Boxes
These boxes can also get dirty with food scraps and other organic matter, which could give cockroaches a place to eat.

No matter what kind of cardboard you have, you should take steps to get rid of any food and shelter for cockroaches. This means putting cardboard in containers that don’t let air in, cleaning up spills and crumbs, and making your home less cluttered.

Can The Glue Use In Cardboard Also Attract Cockroaches?

No, the Glue used in the cardboard doesn’t attract cockroaches. The glue used in cardboard production is typically a water-based adhesive that is designed for bonding the fibers of the cardboard together and is not formulated to provide food to pests such as cockroaches.

On the other hand, cockroaches are drawn to food, moisture, and shelter, so if the cardboard has any food or water stains or is in a warm and humid environment, it may attract cockroaches.

Also, if the cardboard has come into contact with food or other things that cockroaches like during the making or shipping process, it could make it more appealing to these pests.

How To Make Cardboards Less Attractive To Cockroaches? 

Cockroaches like cardboard because it is warm and damp, which is good for their survival. You can try the following to make cardboard less attractive to cockroaches:

  • The cardboard should be kept in a dry place. Moisture is good for cockroaches, so keeping cardboard boxes in a dry place is important.
  • Cockroaches can fit through tiny holes and cracks. To keep cockroaches out of your home, seal any holes in the walls, floors, and ceilings.
  • Natural repellents like catnip or peppermint oil can keep cockroaches away from cardboard. Cockroaches don’t like the strong smell of these herbs.
  • Properly dispose of cardboard. If you don’t need any more cardboard boxes, remove them immediately.
  • Wipe down surfaces with soap and water and vacuum floors and carpets to get rid of any food particles that could attract cockroaches.


Can Cockroaches Lay Eggs In Cardboard Boxes?

Yes, cockroaches can lay eggs inside cardboard boxes. In fact, cockroaches like to lay their eggs in cardboard boxes because they are warm, dark, and damp.
Female cockroaches can lay up to 50 eggs at once, and they often do so in cracks and crevices, like the folds of cardboard boxes.
If you have cardboard boxes in your home, you should check them often for cockroach activity, such as egg cases, shed skins, and feces.

Can Cockroaches Be Transported In Cardboard Boxes?

Yes, you can transport cockroaches in cardboard boxes. Cockroaches are known to be strong creatures that can live in harsh environments and travel long distances. They can squeeze into small spaces and live for a long time without food or water.
Cockroaches can travel in cardboard boxes. Cockroaches like them because they are dark, dry, and have enough room to move around. But it’s important to know that cockroaches can also continue living in cardboard boxes, so it’s important to check the boxes carefully before using them.

Is Storing Cardboard Boxes In My Home Safe If I’m Concerned About Cockroaches?

You can store cardboard boxes in your home without worrying about cockroaches if you take the right steps. Cockroaches like food and water, so don’t keep boxes in damp or humid places; check them before bringing them inside. 
If you need to, use pest control products and keep your home clean and organized to keep cockroaches away. If you’re still worried, you can use plastic storage containers instead of cardboard boxes, which are less likely to attract cockroaches.

Should I Remove All Cardboard From My Living Space If I Have A Cockroach Infestation In My Home?

Yes, you should remove all Cardboard from my living space if you have a cockroach infestation in my home. Cardboard is attractive to cockroaches because it gives them a place to hide and lay their eggs. By getting rid of cardboard, you can take away a place where cockroaches could hide and make it harder for them to have babies and spread.

Can Use Plastic Storage Containers Instead Of Cardboard Boxes Help Prevent Cockroach Infestations?

Yes, using plastic containers for storage instead of cardboard boxes can help keep cockroaches away. Cockroaches like the smell of cardboard and can hide in it and lay eggs on it. Cockroaches have a harder time getting into plastic containers and are easier to clean. 
To keep cockroaches away, ensure your home is well-seal and do not leave food out. Even if you switch to plastic containers, you might still get an infestation, so it’s best to call a professional if you have one.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, cardboard does have natural starches and glues that can attract cockroaches. Cockroaches can eat these things, and they can also use cardboard to hide and lay eggs. For this reason, cockroaches often make their homes in cardboard boxes.

Even though plastic storage containers can help keep cockroaches away to some extent, it’s still important to keep your house clean and seal it well to keep these pests out. Regular cleaning and the right way to store food and other things can go a long way toward keeping your home free of cockroaches and other pests.


Dolhun EP, Antes AW. A Case of Cardboard Boxes Likely Facilitating the Biting of a Patient by Trypanosoma cruzi-Infected Triatomine Bugs. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2016 Nov 2;95(5):1115-1117. 

T. Pereira, A.S.L. Neves, F.J.G. Silva, R. Godina, L. Morgado, G.F.L. Pinto, Production Process Analysis and Improvement of Corrugated Cardboard Industry, Procedia Manufacturing,
Volume 51, 2020, Pages 1395-1402, ISSN 2351-9789.