Crossposted with TheGrenGrok.com.More than 80,000 chemicals are produced, used, and present in the United States. This is one of their stories.
When it comes to stopping bedbugs, Ohio wants to choose its poison.
The Return of the Bedbug (Unfortunately, Not a Summer Blockbuster)
After a decades-long absence from the American bed, bedbugs are back with a vengeance. From New York to Los Angeles, the little, nighttime, creepy-crawly bloodsuckers have been moving beyond household digs, spreading their wings (so to speak, as they are wingless, flightless critters) to hotels, movie theaters, offices, department stores. Wherever they can find little nooks to settle into.
Why the return? There are lots of hypotheses but no definitive reason so far. Some blame the ban on DDT. But others argue not likely — bedbugs developed a resistance to DDT before the ban (see here, here, and here); and the chemical’s phaseout in the 1970s has not led to a similar resurgence in mosquitoes or other pests. Others blame the comeback of bedbugs on their resistance to DDT’s many substitutes (e.g., malathion, diazinon, lindane, chlordane, dichlorovos and now pyrethroids). And still others argue that the current recrudescence can be traced to bedbug-hitchhiking on foreign travelers’ clothes and bags — hence their initial appearance in major cities.
Alternative: Integrated Pest Management
EPA outlines how an integrated pest management plan can be used
effectively to get rid of infestations. These plans are designed to be
environmentally sensitive and to minimize cost and hazards while
utilizing bedbug life cycle and behavioral information to effectively
remove them. Get the details.
The Dope on These Blood-Sucking Freaks
Whatever the reason, bedbugs are no slumber party. Hiding in daytime in little creases, crevices and cracks in beds and walls, the little guys come out at night to feast on their slumbering human hosts’ blood. They’re insidious in their attacks — injecting a local anesthetic before biting so as to avoid awakening their victims who can arise in the morning to find their sheets bloodstained and their bodies itchy and marked with bites.
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