It’s nice to see that CNN did a story on bed bugs yesterday. In Bedbugs and other pests: The ugly side of city life, Catriona Davies emphasizes the spread of bed bugs and the difficulty of controlling or eliminating them.
She quotes Maciej Ceglowski on the success of his Bed Bug Registry (where users warn others of places they encountered bed bugs) and David Cain of Bed Bugs Limited (well known and beloved by our Bedbugger Forum users), and cites Australian entomologist Stephen L. Doggett, author of the essential Bed Bug Code of Practice. (You can download the second edition or draft third edition of the Bed Bug Code of Practice here.)
Davies gives the last word to the always astute UK entomologist and consultant Clive Boase:
“Public health and environmental health are seen as rather dirty subjects that people don’t really want to think about,” he said.
“But it is vital that city authorities pay more attention to public health and pest control, rather than leaving it to private companies who can only deal with each case on its own.”
Did everyone catch that?
City authorities need to stop leaving pest control solely to private companies who are hired to deal with individual cases.
In the case of bed bugs, I’d add, these companies are often if not usually paid to look at those individual cases without regards to the spread of bed bugs — as if they sprung up in isolation, as if there are no adjoining units they could be going to or coming from. In other words, without regard to how bed bugs move around.
If we want to control the spread of bed bugs, we need to look at the big picture, not just the isolated building or apartment.
I’m so glad to see CNN talking to the right kinds of people, and conveying this important message.
And (ahhhhhhh!) without all of the nursery rhyme bells and whistles…
(You can find more stories referencing Clive Boase here.)