Friday, August 26, 2005

Bat Man

We have bats. Well, we had bats, prior to today, and hopefully they won't be coming back. Don't get me wrong, I love bats. I think they're cute, they keep hours that prevent us from coming into contact with each other, and they eat mosquitos. They also then poop out those mosquitos all over my driveway, complete with spores that cause histoplasmosis which will kill you dead. Honestly, I don't know how Batman does it. He must have some serious air filtration going on in that place.

We first noticed we had Bats when mounds of what appeared to be shit showed up, magically, on the driveway. The sad part, is that this went on for weeks, before we thought anything was wrong, as if shit magically materializes at our house all the time. "Hey honey, there's some more shit in the kitchen." It wasn't until Linda saw a "bird" fly into the garage and I found a bat hanging on some old gutter guards in the garage that we put 2 and 2 together. I went up into the attic above the garage and there were roughly 50 million bats in there, snoozing away quietly.

We had a wildlife control person out to the house and he found, along with the bats, a snake skeleton, a rat skeleton, two dead flying squirrels and a very alive grey squirrel, the latter two species in the attic above our bedroom. This confirmed my wife's suspicions as she had heard something running around up there at night as if it were Critter Valley Speedway. When it rains, the squirrels prefer to nest in the dry comfort of our attic and, while they're there, eat wiring. If they just wanted to hang out, I'd be OK but once they start fucking with my wires and potentially burning my house down, I have to draw the line.

It would appear that we have a construction gap at the roofline of a couple of inches so that the critters can get in unfettered. I would think that I'd notice such a gap, as that would be kind of drafty, however it's one of those newfangled gaps that allows in vermin but not energy stealing drafts.

For the bats, he installed something called a check valve which appears to be a garbage bag stapled to the front of my house. This makes it so that the bats can fly out but not fly back in. I thought that this was kind of mean, as I can only imagine the bat's confusion upon coming home fat and tired from a long night of insect eating, only to find that they can't get into their house. The bats, crafty buggers that they are, were one step ahead of us and moved to the other vent, the one with the attic fan in it. Perhaps crafty is the wrong adjective. Linda suggested that they moved because they were getting tired of being woken up in the middle of the day by the garage door opener. To me, having one's sleep disturbed seems preferable to getting chopped into little bits every time the temperature goes above 90, but hey, whatever works.

For the attic, they've put down cage traps in the hopes that they'll catch whatever is roaming around the attic, release it, and then install aluminum flashing to seal the construction gap. Now, instead of having animals race back and forth all night, we'll be subjected to them throwing themselves against the bars of their steely prisons. This would be the part where the trip to Russia becomes preferable to staying at home. It's a good thing that the bats have left, because if they thought the garage door opener was bad, having a grey squirrl hitting his little cup against the cage bars and screaming "Attica!" is likely to drive them to fly into the lawn mower.


LSG said...

"if they thought the garage door opener was bad, having a grey squirrl hitting his little cup against the cage bars and screaming "Attica!" is likely to drive them to fly into the lawn mower."

O M G!! You're killing me here! Too funny!

Asphyxiate said...

That same line had me in fits too. Great post Brandon. I'm glad you're after humane bat-dispersal methods other than going up there with a pair of plyers and a blow-torch. I love me animals.