Squirrels and bats…bats and squirrels…anyway you say it its just not a pleasing combination. Now, squirrels, I have watched playfully running and jumping from tree to tree, scurrying round the tree trunk chasing a friend….even trying to figure out my bird feeder…unsuccessfully, I may add. They can be amusing. Dogs like them…and so do little boys. Then there are bats…bats….NO, there is nothing I can say good about them…except they dine on mosquitos! And, that one took his dying breath along side my driveway a year or so back…and Levi was able to see what a bat looked like up close. No, we didn’t touch it!
Several, SEVERAL, months back, I heard running over my head. Tiny little steps. I thought they were on the roof. They were not. They got louder and louder. At odd times during the day, I would hear them. Still not knowing they were inside. Scratching…by tiny little claws…close to me, but hidden. And, it was then I realized there was not an attic separating them from me…there was only a ceiling between us. Scratching the floor…you know how a dog will find something in the grass and he will scratch really fast for a few seconds then stop and sniff…then scratch again. Like that. It was freaky. I would hit the ceiling where they were…which was around my dining table…and they stopped. I went back to bed after closing all the air vents in my bedroom…just in case one of them tried to gain access. I told Don when he got home and he said he “never heard them so it must not be true…I was hearing things.” !!??!!!? And, for sure…sometimes I wander over to the crazy side for a visit…but I wasn’t visiting when I heard this. A few more nights, I’d hear the same thing. He was never around when it happened. Then I heard thumping. What could they be doing? Do squirrels thump their tails or something? Or were they engaged in frisky play that would result in a litter of little squirrels doing their homework in my attic? This happened over and over for months!
I fussed….I fumed…I complained….I even nagged…it’s possible I did even worse, too. I wanted them out. And, today was not soon enough. Yesterday was better, but it was gone and that made me madder!
Finally, he called a man with a catchy name who came out and checked into it for us. He gave us definitive news. We had squirrels in our attic and a nice community of bats, as well. Living peaceably together in MY attic. “Get them out!” says I. He responds that he can surely get them out….the ones he can find. But, he finishes with the statement that there is nothing he can do to KEEP them out. That’s not his job. He’ll GET them out…but that’s the extent of it. Then if their grandma and fourteen second cousins come back the next night…he would have to come back. And, then he reminded us of this archaic law of the land. IT IS AGAINST THE LAW TO KILL BATS. Did you know that? Well it is. So to get them out, he would have to lure them out of a device and then fix said device so they could not get back in. But, that still was not his job. We were on our own. This nice man did get a 4 foot rattlesnake out of my garage once. But when I told him recently that my yard person saw 3 Copperheads under the wooden shed in the backyard, he did not offer to come and rescue me once again. But, he said, if they were able to make it up onto the porch or into the garage..call him! THAT’s his job!
There is not someone here in our town that will get monsters out of the attic and prevent them from returning. No one in our fair city offers this service. So Don found a company out of Marietta, Georgia that does this very thing…gets ’em out and keeps ’em out. And, they happen to have a man stationed in Panama City, FL.
The Bat Man comes to our house and makes the acquaintance of all those residing upstairs. Then he shows us where they are entering and leaving. The bats in one place…the squirrels another. They have managed to hone in on a wonderful setup…if you are a bat or a squirrel. We have those louvered vents all along the house and they are made of metal. So the trap he has will not work. He has to rig up something to get them out…and then cover all the louvers. Because he cannot break the law and kill them. Then he will clean the attic and fumigate. And all will be well. He worked for 2 weeks. He set traps for the squirrels that I could hear snapping shut during the night! To trap the bats he made traps that looked like big black garbage bag flags flying from all the vents of my house. So classy!
The squirrel family…the wayward brother…always bringing girls home with him…
The Mom who was the lookout in case the bats crossed the line…
The Head of the Crime Syndicate…Mr.. Whiskers…
And, Bob, the playful sibling…..
These were the only ones I could capture on camera…
And here are the Bats….Dad…keeping the whole house under observation…
The 3 worthless brothers who just ‘hung around’ all day…
And, the babies, they tucked in gently every night while they all left to frolic in the moonlight!
Finally, we were told all the bats were out and cleaning would commence…followed by disinfection. The cleaning out, I did not see..but after the disinfection…I had to leave town. It was chemical laden and drifted down into the people part of the house. It actually made me physically sick. Thank goodness I had a little cottage at the beach to hold up in for a few days. And, I did. With my sister. It was nice. However the television was not working so we had to entertain each other with singing and dancing and skits and plays. I prefer TV. But I digress.
I came home and the smell was still there. But different…actually, it was worse…lots worse. The Bat Man came back…said a couple of the brothers had hidden out under the insulation and he had to take care of that. He did. I had a day or two of peace. Then Don had to leave on a trip last Thursday. By Saturday… that most awful smell was back in my house…again it made me physically ill. Don walked in from his trip and caught a whiff! He called the Bat Man before he even put his suitcase away. He came the next day. 3 squirrels and 1 bat, had been trapped inside, but had succumbed to the elements and chose the attic as their final resting place. Not fine with me. He got them out…I lit every candle I had. By morning all evidence of death was erased. Gotta buy some more candles!
And, now its been a week. If I hear a limb or a pinecone hit the roof…I go into panic mode. But, so far, so good. After I picked up all the scrap metal netting and screws out of the yards and out of the pool…hopefully all traces of this horrid event will fade from my memory.
But, remember year or so back when the chimney sweeps (little birds) got into my fireplaces and laid nests? You may not, but I distinctly remember them because they would chose 2 o’clock in the morning to teach their little ones to sing. Their chirping sounding like squawks. It echoed and reverberated throughout the house. It was spooky. We told them to leave and made lots of noise. We watched a lot of them fly out. We gave them plenty of warnings. And then lit a fire. They didn’t comeback. But, wire netting is covering all the chimneys now, too…just in case!
Stay away, critters. We do not deal nicely with unwelcomed guests!
And I betcha Don believes me next time I hear something in the attic! If he doesn’t, I have The Bat Man on speed dial!
Once,in college, I was awakened in the middle of the night to strange fluttering sounds in my bedroom. On my second attempt to get up and determine what was going on, I discovered a bat was flying from corner to corner. It took a while to get it out. I don't like bats either.
Unbelievable!! But as always, the funniest account of bats and squirrels I have ever read! We had our fair share of bat stories when we lived in older houses. And I totally remember the sound of squirrels frolicking in the attic of Jeremy's DC house. It sounded like someone had fallen out of bed! And I most certainly know that horrid smell of death. For us it was mice that decided to pass away where we could not reach them. Ugh!!!!
I do hope your unwelcome visitors will heed your warning!