Saturday, August 18, 2012

Dead Bat Found, No Explanation from Dog

Good ol' Saturday. One can clean, catch up on a couple chores, maybe start a project. In between laundry and dishes, I spied a small black pile of something on the first floor landing, under a plant. Upon closer inspection I see that it is a bat carcass. Husbear and I were out of the house for a long while on Thursday night, it may have happened then. If I was home while Pickles did his catch and kill number, I would know it. These remains could quite well have been there since Thursday night. Yesterday I slept late and rushed out the house for work, then came home and watched tv, certainly not looking in corners. Today I looked in corners.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Hot off the Press, Bat fools Pickles

Today around midnight I was sitting on the couch with Pickles, who was sleeping, and Peretz, who was sleeping on the floor, when I saw the familiar winged movement of a bat nearby. I tried to grab Pickles who didn't notice at first (because he was asleep) and saw that Peretz was tracking the movement of the bat as it flew around the room. That's interesting because he's sort of blind.

Pickles woke up and started mucking about wildly and I got up and opened my good luck good bye bat window and turned off the lights in the living room, turning on lights in other rooms (in an effort to keep bat in darkened room with open window). I went into the kitchen where Peretz was already hanging out, waiting to go out and pee. I put him on his line but didn't open the door (wild Pickles was still loose). Then I went to the living room where Pickles was standing on a chair next to the open window looking like he could jump out the window and get free which freaked me out (this dog is no fun to go chase around the neighborhood). I saw that he was looking out the window and next to the bookcase by the window. I saw that I also didn't notice winged creature anywhere about, moving. S/he could be behind the bookcase, hiding from crazy dog. I dragged Pickles to the kitchen and put him on his line, letting both dogs out.

I wandered around the downstairs looking around, turning on lights and nothing, no bat movement. It had only been ten minutes, not even, could the bat have really wised up that quick and got out? That would be nice. Pickles was over by the window looking for bat. I made a few more laps and then let the dogs in. I closed up the window and looked again behind the bookcase. Pickles made his rounds as well and camped out in the corner, where the bat was last seen (by him). We hung around the downstairs for another 30 minutes. No bat.
Did the bat really get out and away from Pickles, the bat killing high jumper? I'm going to bed now with that belief firm in my sleepy time reality. I like the bats' learning curve

I spoke too soon. After finishing that last entry, Pickles left the comfort of my bedroom and raced down the stairs. I heard noise and then the barking started up. I dressed and came downstairs, closing all the doors I could as I descended. Sure enough, there was the flying around, dog-tailed mess. I repeated my action, turning on lights, opening window and the bat came in the bright kitchen and went into the dark pantry, then flew back out and went out into the living room. It's again quiet. I did not see the thing get out. Can I trust it did and go back to bed? Is it again behind my furniture, ready to come back out and raise another ruckus? Perhaps I'll bring Pickles up to my room and close him in. I'm not going to leave that window open all night, though.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Bat o Rama

Today I called the bat guy and he said that bats are found in houses this time of year (mid summer) because the juveniles venture out of their lairs for the first time and don't know the way out and instead, come in.
He's been getting 4-5 calls a day to help with household bat problems. It would cost $250 to have him come in and give an assessment. He won't make the bats go away for $250. He just visits the bat home and gives a bat lowdown. "Well, I've put up with them for 10 years, I can put up with them for a while longer. I'll call you when you're less busy. See you in September." was my response.
        Cut to 2:30 this morning, I am awoken by the undeniable Pickles barking frenzy which means only one thing. No, he doesn't want to watch Sabrina again, he wants to catch the juvenile bat which is flying around the first floor. I hear David close his door with a firm non-interventionist policy and after 10 minutes of sporadic and annoying barking I get up, put clothes on and a hat, and go downstairs.
      Staying low to the floor, I run over to the window which worked for me recently and open it wide, then I grab the dog and put him on his lead, which comes inside from the back porch, just to keep him out of the way. He runs to the end of it from the kitchen and dining room, barking and being annoying. The bat circles the downstairs and once ventured up to the second floor. I crawl onto the sofa and watch the open window.
      The bat circles and circles again, going nearer and nearer to the open window. The dog, on the opposite side of the house, does not see the bat when it is circling by the window. He eventually winds down, thankfully. I find that it is his frenzy which makes the bat visit so unpleasant and stressful. If I can just get him out of the situation, I am more apt to save the bat's life.
        It takes a good 30-40 minutes and positive thinking from me but the bat does finally circle its arc tight enough and then, poof! disappears outside. Window gets closed, Pickles gets released and searches the house in vain, I take cold shower and now, to bed.

Monday, August 06, 2012

Smart Bat?

Today is bat weather and earlier tonight as I watched the last episodes of Downton Abbey's season 2 with the dogs, I saw a piece of plaster fall from the living room ceiling, from where I think they keep appearing (there have been 2 or 3 bats in July), and I thought, "I bet I'll see a bat tonight." I fervently hoped I was wrong.

David came back from Worcester and he and Chris, our houseguest, went to bed. I woke up around 4 feeling high blood sugar so I went downstairs to test it and take some meds. As my foot hit the ground on the first floor I heard that plaster sound and a whirring and I knew that my prediction had come true, before even seeing the creature flying around the kitchen. "Shit." I muttered and noticed that both dogs were off somewhere, prob in David's room, so I did something I've been wanting to try all summer. I went over to one of the windows in the living room and opened the top half, removing the screen so there was a wide space leading to the front yard (outdoors). I choose this window because it was at the end of a straight shot of space, meaning the bat could fly through the dining room into the living room and with any luck, keep flying in the same trajectory out this window. Also, it was the easiest to clear of any impediments. I went back to bed.

Of course I couldn't sleep. For a half hour or more I lay there, worried about the open window, worried about the  chaos the bat made in my house whenever they come to visit and Pickles sees them and chases them around barking. I hoped that the bat would escape and eat a giant load of mosquitoes to make up for all of the ones I was letting in my house. After that long sleepless time, I started to imagine one of those pesky squirrels who live in the neighbors front porch finding its way into the screenless window and then what a chaos that would make. It worried me.

I got up out of bed and hoped I would be able to muster the courage to go downstairs and check the premises. I couldn't imagine doing it but I put on my robe and a hat that I had at hand and went downstairs. In the bathroom I grabbed a large coffee table book to fend off anything flying at my head. I peeked down the stairs for flying movement. Nothing. Hoping for the best, I continued downstairs and found nothing flying around, nothing hanging on walls, no squirrels either.

I took care of my business from way back prebat times, all the while looking around for movement. Nothing. I closed the screen and went upstairs, feeling hopeful but skittish. Perhaps now I can go back to resting, now that I saved a bat's life.