I dropped the CusterMap we had on the old host, which showed the geographical locations readers were coming from on a map with red dots, partly because I think there are other options to be tried out.
But when we last looked at a month of Bedbugger visitors, there were some interesting things to be seen. Most dots were in North America, with every part of the US and Canada represented. We had readers on every continent, and in most countries, from Iceland to the tiny island of Reunion.
In Europe, two cities had the largest dots: London and Sweden. I realize our readership does not just mean people either have bed bugs or a concern about them, but also that one has access to the internet and can read and write enough English to get by. (Thanks to our so-far-anonymous first Bedbugger translator, who is generous and modest, we may soon be able to help more people.). It seems entirely possible that Sweden has a lot of people who read English and have internet access, but it appears to have a lot of bed bugs as well.
Reader Tiago, in Sweden, commented in the “Tales of Woe” yesterday, mentioning the spread of bed bugs there:
Nobugs, the situation here in Sweden is getting complicated, from what I understand – my swedish is still weak but, by now, I know very well the word vägglus – swedish for bedbugs, although literally they call them “wall lice.” There is a fairly important second hand market thing here and that may help spreading them. I also understand from the commercials that IKEA takes old mattresses away as a discount on your new one – I hope they know what they’re doing!
The term “wall lice” used to be used here in the US, too.
Sweden strikes me as a country that cares about the environment. Mattress recycling is a good idea on many levels, but having the mattresses exposed in the truck to new items being delivered, and to goodness knows what else on the other end, is a very bad idea.
I think a lot of us care very much about the environment and are thus all the more horrified to find ourselves bulk-buying (and throwing out!) enormous plastic bags, having endless toxic pesticides sprayed in our homes, and slashing up and replacing furniture that would otherwise be good for years more.
There are ways to recycle mattresses and other items safely. We need governments and corporations to become aware of this need, and help solve the problem of the spread of bed bugs, while still allowing us to avoid sending everything to the landfill. (Do you know how many years it takes to disintegrate an XL ziploc bag?)