There is no hope. Discouraged and terrified scientists now tell us that the modern urban bedbug has spent the last decade drinking in our best poisons while emitting tiny cackles, growing stronger and stronger and stronger and scarier.

New scientific studies reveal facts that would have been better left unknown, as we at least would have been able to soothe ourselves by entertaining thoughts of hope, albeit futile ones.

In New York City, bedbugs now are 250 times more resistant to the standard pesticide than bedbugs in Florida, due to changes in a gene controlling the resilience of the nerve cells targeted by the insecticide

We New Yorkers must learn to get along with our bedbug companions, for we have no choice. Their rapidly thickening exoskeletons and poison-destroying enzymes are rendering our once-potent chemicals laughably insufficient. Is ours the final generation that will grow up having known the halcyon days when bedbug infestations were seen as a controllable phenomenon?

Laboratory tests in the U.S., Europe and Africa show today's bedbugs can survive pesticide levels a thousand times greater than the lethal dose of a decade or so ago.


[WSJ. Photo: liz.novack]