Tag Archives: bat in the house

Get Rid of Bat

bat removal

“Myron, I think we need to get rid of a bat.”  I heard my wife call from the other room. She sounded so nonchalant, like it was the most normal thing in the world to yell to me across our home, starting a conversation about bats.  She might as well have been asking me if I wanted turkey or roast beef in my sandwich.  Admittedly, I was a little confused.  After nearly fifty years of marriage, we’d never had a bat in the house.  A mouse problem once, but that was a long time ago.

Maybe I misheard her.  “What’d you say, Jane?  Do you need anything?”  I called out.

“A bat.  A BAT.  I think we need to get rid of a bat!”  Her voice was a little more insistent and a lot more irritated.  She hates it when I don’t hear her correctly.  She thinks I ignore her sometimes on purpose.  If I’m completely honest with myself, sometimes I do.

Sighing, I put down my tools.  During my working years, I had dreams of my retired life.  It involved a lot of golf, a lot of time watching football, and plenty of time in my wood shop.  So far, I spent the majority of my time finishing the basement and turning it into basically a second home.   I’d built a kitchen and living room down there, a couple of bedrooms and an office.  It had been my wife’s idea, and so I grumbled about it a lot.  Truth is, I was enjoying myself.

But, now I had to stop, once again, and head back upstairs to where my wife sat on her easy chair, playing Sudoku.  Her health hadn’t been so good this last year, which meant she wasn’t able to spend her retirement years traveling, as she’d wanted.

I made it upstairs and saw her looking up at the wall above the mantle.  “A bat, Myron.  I said we need to get rid of a bat.”

Looking up, I saw the bat on the wall.  At first, it looked like a medium-sized smudge, but as I walked closer to the fireplace, I could easily see my wife was right.  We needed to get rid of the bat.  I was impressed that she was still sitting there, doing her Sudoku, in the presence of this creature.  She hadn’t been this calm when we had a mouse problem.  The years had mellowed us both out.

I had no idea how to get rid of the bat, though.  My mind went through the possibilities.  At best, I might scare it out of the house.  More likely, though, I’d end up scaring it into a witless flight pattern around our heads, and possibly hurt myself in the process.  Plus, I really wanted to get back to my basement project.  Then, it dawned on me.  Call Allstate Animal Control.  They’d send someone out to get rid of the bat for me, and my wife and I could go back to our respective retirement activities.  Good plan.

Bat Problems

“. . . And that, girls, is the problem with bats.”  Mark wrapped up his scary story with the deepest voice he could muster and looked around the room at his daughter and her friends.  No one looked impressed.  One of the ten-year-olds even rolled her eyes, and his daughter looked mortified.  So much for throwing the perfect Halloween sleep over.

His wife, Lindsey, swooped into the room with her impeccable timing.  “Who wants pizza?!”  The girls squealed and ran out of the room.  She smiled at him, hugtged him, and sweetly said, “I told you they would’ve liked a ghost story better than a monster story.”

“Thanks for the moral support,” he said wryly.

“Well, let’s go feed these little monsters.  You can make it up to them by serving up your famous root beer floats.”

“So, I’m good for something, at least.  Scooping ice cream and pouring soda.  Whoopee.”

His wife laughed and they walked downstairs, hand in hand, towards the giggling group.  Soon, the girls were talking and laughing around mouthfuls of pizza and gulps of root beer floats.  His daughter had almost forgiven him the mortal sin of embarrassing her and boring her friends.  Everyone trooped into the media room to start a movie, and they were just beginning to settle down as it started when someone let out an ear-jarring high pitched screech.  “BAAAAAAT!!!”

Screams and squeals and running greeted him as he charged into the room.  Sure enough, amidst the flying ponytails and spilled soda, a bat was flying around the room.  It obviously desperately wanted to leave this gaggle of girls and fly free into the night.  But, the enclosed media room and frantic activity had it scared.

Lindsey shepherded the girls out of the room and up the stairs, calmed them down and began checking for bites or scratches.  Mark was left in the suddenly quiet room and faced the bat, which had now perched on a chair.  “Now what?” he muttered.  He closed the door to the room, shutting the bat up inside, and went to the garage to fish out his work gloves, an empty box and a thin piece of plywood from the garage.  Returning to the media room, he took a breath and closed the door behind him.  He was surprised the bat had not moved, but it was probably having a minor heart attack of its own.  Quickly, he set the box over it, slid the plywood underneath and, rather awkwardly, marched outside to let it free.

“How’d it get in there?” he asked himself, as he headed back into the media room to investigate.  It wasn’t too long before he realized what had probably happened.  When he’d put the media rom together, he’d cut a hole into the ceiling, just wide enough to work the numerous wires up through the attic and down into the room.  Were there more bats up there?  He was going to have to make a phone call to get someone out here to check it out.

He walked out of the room to make the call and was greeted by his daughter and her little girlfriends.  They applauded.  They hugged him.  They cheered.  He grinned and said, “And that, girls, is the problem with bats.”

Bat Trapping

Bat Trapping as a family is usually not an organized, pre-planned event, and it certainly is a terrible thing to attempt in the middle of the night.

A family member wakes up in the middle of the night, and heads for the kitchen, visions of last night’s enchilada’s dancing in their head.  Leftovers sound pretty great at 3 in the morning when you can’t sleep.  A light switch is flicked on and he walks over to the refrigerator, grabs out the pan and sets it on the counter.  It isn’t until he turns to the silverware drawer that he sees it, a large black smudge on the wall that wasn’t there before he went to bed.  Then, the smudge moves, and he realizes it’s a bat.

His yell wakes everyone else up, and they come running into the kitchen, only to have mixed emotions when they find out what the yelling was about.  An older brother mocks him for being scared of something so little.  A little sister screams even louder than he did.  Mom shudders, wondering if it flew into any of the bedrooms while her children were sleeping.  Dad’s mad and wants to trap the bat so he can get back to sleep.

Of course, no one is thinking very clearly that early in the morning, so the family becomes a living, breathing Laurel and Hardy movie, running around, waving things, throwing things, bumping into each other.  Through it all, the bat just sits there on the wall, oblivious to everything.

Finally, Dad takes charge and calms everyone down as best he can.  He grabs up a towel, and heads towards the bat.  The moment he gets close, though, the bat is off and flying.  People scream, but no one wants to admit it was them.  Dad runs through the kitchen into the front room, following the bat with his trusty old towel.  Someone turns on the light to the front room, which just causes the bat to fly around more frantically.  More screams.  Big brother thinks he’s being helpful when he comes running in with a large plastic tote, waving it around, and bonking into Dad and his towel.  No one is quite sure what either Dad or big brother intend on doing with the bat, armed insufficiently as they are.

Finally, little sister brings in a butterfly net and waits until the bat has landed on a wall again. She hands it to Dad, who creeps up to the wall, intent on bat trapping.  He slams the butterfly net over the bat and Mom asks, “Now what’re you going to do with it?”  Slowly, unsure of himself, Dad maneuvers the net until the bat is trapped within.  He opens the door and throws his new bat trap, bat inside, out into the front lawn, and jumps back into the house, slamming the door behind him.

It took a while for everyone to calm down enough to go back to bed, for the rest of what was left of the night.  Everyone hoped that bat would find its way out of the net and back into the open sky, but no one slept very soundly until they could go out and make sure their bat trap had worked.