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Sunday, June 08, 2008

As if We Didn't Have Enough to Worry About...

WCBS TV reports that the Long Island home of 45-year-old Nina Bradica was infested with "blood-sucking" bird mites. When EMTs responded to her call for help, she was taken from her home in a hazmat suit to be quarantined at Nassau University Medical Center. The source of the infestation was a bird's nest in a bathroom vent.

"My whole shower was covered with them," Bradica said. "I didn't even know they were there at first, I was drying myself with my towel in the bathroom. That's how they got on me. ... They do go inside you. They go in your nose. They go in your ears. They go in your mouth."

As if that wasn't creepy enough, one of Bradica doctors, Dr. Kenneth Steier, told WCBS News, "They can be a nuisance and some people have been infected for years with these bird mites and have had difficulty eradicating them."

After reading this news story, I did a little more research. This kind of thing isn't as uncommon as you might think. A family in Fayetteville, North Carolina, went through the same thing.

I also ran across, a site "dedicated to finding effective solutions for bird mite infestations of humans and their environment, encouraging those afflicted, facilitating research and a better understanding of human parasitosis." If you want to know just how serious this problem can be, and learn about some ways to deal with it, check it out.

In the meantime, I think I'm going to put bird-proof screens over all exterior vent openings on our house.

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