I was kitteh sitting Goblin this week while Lori was away. I only saw him once – on a day when it was raining so the intrepid hunter kitty was inside, taking a nap in the bed. He let me rub his belly and told me to put food in his bowl, but he didn’t get out of bed for a snuggle with me on the couch.
I waited an hour.
I didn’t see Goblin again all week. Lucky for me, Lori’s house had another visitor that made my week exciting. As I was sitting there one night, watching some TV and waiting to see if the kitty would show up, I heard a thunk by the door. Then I saw something out of the corner of my eye.
It is a weird fact of Cheyenne that the wildlife varies from block to block. My old house is less than a mile away from our current house, but the birds are completely different. Our house is three blocks away from Lori’s and we see bats flying but they don’t live on our block. For that matter, there are turkey vultures two blocks the other direction and I’m not aware of anywhere else in town that has them.
So anyway…I love bats and would love to have one as a pet some day, but I will admit that they are super creepy when they are flying and swooping in a panic in the living room. I immediately went outside to prop the door open so I could turn off the lights in the house and attract him to the porch light.
Immediately after that I realized there were two problems with my plan. First, Lori’s door doesn’t prop open. And second, bats are not miller moths – they are not attracted to light.
Plan B involved low walking across the living room to search for something with which to grab a bat. I found Goblin’s blanket. Returning to the living room, I waited for the bat to land on something. A moment later he smacked into the wall and fell to the floor behind Lori’s curtains. I ran over as he started to climb them.
He had things to say.
As I bunched up the blanket around him – vowing that if I so much as brushed him I was going to the ER for a rabies shot – he ticktickticktickticked at me. I managed to get him wrapped up, and covered his head to calm him down. Then I got him to let go of the curtains and off we went to the porch. He crawled out of the blanket and flew away.
Full of adrenaline, I closed up the house and went home. And then I heard it. Our entire tree was filled with bats ticktickticktickticking. I hoped they were there to thank me for rescuing their friend. I hoped they didn’t blame him and gather to plot their revenge.
Two days later, Lori was home. And she called me about a bat in her house. We’ve thought about this and I think they’ve been hanging out by her porch light, which attracts tiny moths that make a good meal for bats. When they start to fly, they drop a little bit in a free fall before they spread their wings to fly. And I think they were dropping through the not-closed-tight screen door.
Anyway, I walked up to her house and found Goblin’s blanket. This time the bat swooped low and almost hit my head as he tried to fly through the doorway. He caught a little bit of the door, spun into the wall and fell to the floor. I tossed the blanket over him, then managed to throw more blanket over him just as his cute little face poked out of a hole in the blanket. I bundled him up and took him out in the front yard.
Have I mentioned how cute they are? I want one. But, like, a domestically raised, rabies free one.
It’s August and we have plums again. This means that Kitten Thunder has to deal with us making our favorite August meal: plum and shrimp skewers. And that means we have to deal with their dirty looks as we prepare something that smells delicious…that they don’t like. There’s no amount of talking that will convince them that they don’t like shrimp. And no amount of talking convinces them that the disgusting thing we put in front of them is the thing that smells so good.
Someone, please, call the ASPCA for them.
You know — if bats are attracted to moths, and moths are attracted to light, then your porch-light plan might actually have worked.
I think so…but it would probably take longer than I was hoping for.