Tuesday, August 5, 2008

78: Housebat

I woke to a chittering sound, like a wobbly ceiling fan. Libby and Gatsby were staring at our window fan and though these days, our house has air you could swim in, I knew that couldn't be why those two were staring so intently at the fan. The double fan, which whirs constantly: the little bat was scrunched up behind it, and after my mouse catching talent of a few summers before, I tupperwared him slowly and cautiously and I have to admit it, I'm a little puffed chested with pride. I had woken my husband just nights before, hoping he would do the dirty work, and he stumbled downstairs, a rainbow dog towel at the ready, then stumbled back when nothing more exciting happened.

In fact, I had decided I was imagining the bat.

But, apparently, I had not.

Now he's sitting in a tupperware (with holes, of course!) next to me as I type this, scrunched up, furious I took him away from his reading, which I know he does while we're sleeping. I left out a little poetry from last night's reading and he agrees--I am truly lucky to know such talented people.

I know this is three thousand percent wrong, but I am having serious trouble letting him go. I want someone else to see him in person before I fling him outside (and where? just by our house so he can get in again? farther away from home? and why do I always seem to misplace my cell phone?), to witness that I caught a bat and IT'S A BAT!. I mean, really. This is the girl who kept picking up toads while she was camping, as if no one had seen a toad before. Besides, doesn't some nature center want him? Somewhere to nurture him with all kinds of wonderful bugs and a good perch (and some Adrienne Rich)?

Well, I've caught the little one anyway, so the mothers who read this blog can rest easy. And to my own mother: I read that only one percent of bats actually carry rabies. Also, to dispel a myth: bats are not blind, but they cannot see very well. They are actually very well-read. At least mine is.

(Can I keep him?)

Edit: Here's a good website on what to do if you find a bat indoors.

Also: More pictures of the little bat here.


Anonymous said...

oh my gosh--I know this is going to sound crazy, but after visiting Austin Texas a few years ago and witnessing the bats swirl out of the bridge (google it-- tens of thousands-- it's a big deal) and learning so many cool facts about the bat, like the female? her baby is ONE-THIRD her body weight-- 1/3-- like if I weighed 120 pounds my baby would be FORTY POUNDS-- whoa. And so, I came to love the bat-- but, right now there is a HUGE crisis with the bat population-- it is so very very sad (again, you can google it) on the east coast-- bats are emerging covered in a white dust and dying in the thousands and no one knows why--

anyway-- take good care of your little fella-- and thanks for sharing-- bluepoppy

KeLL said...

I am really proud of you!
He's kind of cute.

Are you going to catch spiders next?

michelle said...

congrats molly! we had a bat at glensheen once and it scared the poop out of me. well - not really but kinda.

they're cute when they aren't hissing at you!

gracia said...

What a lovely little soul... I adore their paper-like wings.