Bed bugs in Detroit and Troy, Michigan

by nobugsonme on March 31, 2008 · 6 comments

in bed bug treatment, bed bugs, bed bugs and travel, detroit, heat, how to get rid of bed bugs, michigan

Neal Rubin writes in a Detroit News Op-Ed column today that

At Rose Pest Solutions in Troy [Michigan], where Sheperdigian reigns as vice president for technical services, the number of bedbug jobs has risen from one or two in 2001 to about 160 last year, with continued rapid growth expected in 2008.

The article goes beyond the standard “bed bugs are in our area now” articles which are popping up weekly, delving into the origins of the problem, as well as various ways to get rid of bed bugs.

Interestingly, Rubin cites Sheperdigian as challenging the theory that bed bugs came back due to increased travel:

One theory says that bedbugs have reemerged because Americans are traveling more to countries where they never quite went away. The problem is, Sheperdigian says, his research shows we were traveling more in the ’80s and ’90s.

“This isn’t a matter of reintroduction,” he says. “There’s something deeper happening that we don’t understand.”

Rubin also cites Sheperdigian’s opinion on Cryonite:

. . . Sheperdigian’s opinion of one of the trendy new methods of bedbug-whacking, an icy carbon dioxide spray that’s supposed to freeze them in their creepy little tracks. He says it mostly blows them around.

As far as I am concerned, the jury is still out on Cryonite, but I have not personally seen any effectiveness studies yet.

For good measure, the article also notes that, as far as treatment is concerned,

Rose Pest Solutions uses a combination of vacuums, steam and insecticides. Others favor bedbug-sniffing dogs or the equivalent of gigantic hair dryers.

None are foolproof.

1 bugbasher April 1, 2008 at 8:15 am

I find it interesting that he thinks the bugs resurgence id due to something more complex than travel.I have thought so for a long tome,when this happens in nature it means something has drastically changed.What that something is is not obvious to us yet.Everything in nature affects us so I hope someone somewhere is looking into it.This phenomemnon is just as important as the bee colonies that are getting infected with some kind of parasite(I think I read it’s a parasite) and dropping dead like crazy.These are not good signs as they signify a distinct change,both for the worse,and more importantly an imbalance in the enviroment somewhere.

2 hopelessnomo April 1, 2008 at 10:15 am

Frank Meek of Orkin is also on the record as discounting the international travel theory of the resurgence, which, let’s be honest, in many (though not all) cases is just a euphemism for “the immigrants done it.”

The thing that distresses me no end is when this theory is presented as fact. There is no study; there is no evidence. Broken record on this one but this single bedbug issue gives me the creeps more than bedbugs themselves!

3 lieutenantdan April 1, 2008 at 11:52 am

To me it is just common sense to understand a great possibility exists that people traveling to and from countries that have little or no pest control have a great chance of bringing bed bugs back to a country such as the U.S. We have seen a perfect example, an insect called the Asian Longhorn Beetle. The reason that it is called an ASIAN beetle is because the beetle is native to China and Korea and it is believed spread to North America through packaging and now because traveling to far away places has become so easy and doing business with places like China etc… is so common we have the possibilities that insects and disease will spread with more ease than ever before. Now if we can get over the fact that some people are extremely sensitive to the immigration issue and become defensive when it is discussed than we can see how easily insects and disease can spread from one location to another. This just makes perfect sense to me.

4 paulaw0919 April 1, 2008 at 1:57 pm

Yes, I believe some of the come back on bed bugs is due to travel, but I also believe they were never truly rid in in the US. Nature finds a way to survive, no matter what the species. Obviously Sheperdigian hasn’t been blind sided infested with these critters. I hope to have the same comical charismatic attitude someday. It’s good to know that that he is looking for answers as well though. Oh, buy the way…any of you bedbuggers want to unleash a truck load of cockroaches to keep your bed bugs at bay?!?!

5 bugbasher April 1, 2008 at 7:30 pm

Yes,but this is more than survival,this is an explosion in population.Let’s not forget ,they are exploding everywhere,not just here.Something has changed for them to proliferate like this.Maybe it’s the recall of all the pesticides,maybe something else relating to a natural predator decline or something from the atmosphere ie pollution,but it’s obviously much more than travel.I’m even willing to contemplate it’s something biblical,almost,lol.

6 nobugsonme April 1, 2008 at 7:46 pm

Dan, no one doubts that people do carry bed bugs from place to place (city to city, country to country).

But why did they flare up increasingly after around 1999? They were apparently here all that time, so something changed.

Sheperdigian claims his research says we traveled more in the 80s and 90s than we do now.

IF that’s true, then it leads one to question why the incidence of bed bugs seems to have blossomed increasingly after 1999. Travel alone does not explain it.

And I think the same can be said for immigration, since people immigrated here consistently throughout the period of the 1970s-now. I could be wrong, but I don’t think the numbers of immigrants increased that markedly after 1999. But I will leave those numbers for someone else to chase down.

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