Bed Bugs Enjoy Sexing Their Brothers and Sisters

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Bed bugs. They live in your mattress. They infest your books. They crawl all over you and suck your blood in the middle of the night, they terrorize you and ruin your life, they make you constantly itchy, or constantly afraid of feeling itchy. Some among us won't even put their bags on the floors of bars anymore, in fear of catching them. Could they get worse? Oh, yes. Bed bugs are so strong, so impervious to human assault, so ruinous to our lives in part, say researchers, because they are able to inbreed. And they do it well. Probably they even like it! Reports Time: "All it takes to infest an entire apartment building, for example, is one single mated female that hatches her offspring; after that, the brothers and sisters can mate with each other and keep the population booming."

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Adorable Bed Bug Hotels Show New Yorkers Where There Are Bed Bugs

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BedBugHotels.org
This summer was supposed to be the Summer of the Bed Bug (before it became the summer of the rat, and the summer of the hurricane, and the summer we worked a lot). But, thank goodness, the great bed-bug-ification of New York City never truly came to fruition in June, July, and August, and, to tell the truth, we haven't been thinking too terribly much about bed bugs since last year around this time, when we were a bed bug for Halloween. But today we learn that Hunter Fine, an artist and the guy who behind those "hipster traps" baited with PBR and American Spirit -- has been creating adorable little bed bug hotels and putting them next to buildings that actually do have bed bugs, or at least, have been reported as having bed bugs on the Bed Bug Registry. Isn't that super cute?

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Rat Bites Woman as She Waits for J Train

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Brace yourself, fellow commuters, as this is horrible news. Now, to add to our various rational or irrational New York City fears, we have the fear of wearing open-toed shoes while sitting on a bench on a subway platform, because a rat might be hiding underneath it and notice us there and pop out and bite us on the foot. Seriously.

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Sister Mary Therese Encourages Rodent-Human Relations in NYC

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Apparently, August is the month of the rat. Last week, Rosie Gray explored rat bites, which, it appears, are down this year, and on Monday, Jen Doll shared a new fan trailer for the rats of Tompkins Square Park. Last year, we established that rats are indeed New Yorkers' least favorite pests. Well, at least most New Yorkers. There are, in fact, those among us who actually advocate for rats. For example, the self-proclaimed "Advocate for Rodent Rights" Sister Mary Therese, also known as the Tompkins Square Park Rat Lady. A profile of her, um, nontraditional relationship with the rattus norvegicus (thank Google) after the jump.

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The Rats of Tompkins Square Park Have a Movie Trailer Now

It is human nature to be both disgusted and, somehow, deeply intrigued by rats. Maybe it's just August, but this love-hate relationship is again at the forefront of NYC consciousness, as our ratty frenemies seem to be overrunning Tompkins Square Park even more than usual of late. Not content with B- or C-grade celebrity status, the rats now have an M. Night Shyamalan-esque movie trailer.


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New York City Has Slowed the Spread of West Nile Virus Just By Being New York City

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DIY mosquito killer
New York City mosquitoes, we laugh in the face of your West Nile virus! That is because, according to a recent study at the University of Georgia, West Nile has been slowed down in New York City because we're talking about New York City. Seriously. Although most diseases travel at steady or even increasingly rapid speeds as they spread, researchers found that West Nile actually slowed in the city during the observed outbreaks thanks to our highly developed urban environment, a/k/a, a high concentration of buildings and concrete. This knowledge may help public health officials plan containment efforts throughout the U.S., though we're not sure how, exactly. (Put them all in an apartment together?)

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Russian Boat Sinks, 100 Missing; Suit Dismissed Against Downtown Mosque; Bedbug Complaints Up, Violations Down

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• A cruise ship called the Bulgaria, carrying more than 200 people, sank in the Volga River in Russia on Sunday afternoon. More than 100 people, including many children, remain missing -- 13 have been confirmed dead. Rescuers continue to search for survivors.The boat was only licensed to carry 120 people. Russian President Dmitri Medvedev said he believed the 55-year-old boat was in poor condition. [NPR]

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Bedbugs Visit Staten Island Jail

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Despite early rumors that this would be the "summer of bedbugs," we've heard relatively little as the doings of those adorable creatures this season, especially compared to prior years. Remember when they took over Victoria's Secret, Hollister, Hachette Filipacchi, the U.N., the Time Warner Center, and the world? Well, their sites are apparently lower, or maybe they're just taking it slow this summer, because the latest place bedbugs are calling home is the 120th precinct station in Staten Island -- specifically, the holding cells thereof, reports the Staten Island Advance.

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Bee Swarms Invade Manhattan, Again

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Bees in Little Italy in May
It's been a season of bees, so to speak, with swarms making news in Little Italy and across our fevered nation. And now the otherwise humdrum Flatiron District, DNA Info reports, has been hit with not one but two giant swarms of honeybees -- one at the Perfume Warehouse (makes sense) at 22 W. 30th, and another around the corner in front of BeadKraft bead store. Andrew Cote, our local bee expert, got a call to his New York City Beekeepers Association "swarm hotline" yesterday and headed out to rescue the first bee swarm, which weighed 4 pounds and comprised 15,000-some bees.

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Alec Baldwin Could Be Mayor of NYC; Margaret Thatcher Thinks Sarah Palin Is Crazy

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• Alec Baldwin, who is oft-discussed as wanting to run for something, is considering a run for New York City mayor in 2013 now that that Weiner character is kinda out of the picture. After all, he knows how to use Twitter (does he?) and his time on 30 Rock will be over. (Baldwin is a Democrat and is originally from Massapequa, a suburb on Long Island.) [The Daily]

Margaret Thatcher thinks Sarah Palin is nuts. And, despite Palin's hopes, meeting her would be "belittling." Instead, "Margaret is focusing on Ronald Reagan and will attend the unveiling of the statue. That is her level," a source told the Guardian. [NYDN]

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