Saturday, December 1, 2007

Bats Revisited

My sister and her family were coming came over for Thanksgiving and I was gathering together my rarely used serving dishes. One dish I wanted-- broad at the base, narrower at the top-- was on the very top of my cupboard and I had to fetch a stepladder to take it down. I could hear something rattling inside. When I looked in, I saw a small, dessicated brown bat-- just a patch of fur and black twiggy legs and wings. So at least one of the bats that circled my house this summer didn't make it out alive.

I may never be a bat connoisseur but I was saddened to stumble upon a story about a colony of rare fruit bats almost totally wiped out by armed "sportsmen" in Cyprus. Eventually I found a site in Australia, the Tolga Bat Hospital. The pictures are from their site.


Oldtimer said...

We used to have bats in my Aunt's house every year and we kids would have to hunt them down and take them outside. Wonderful creatures. We grew up knowing why they are important.

Regarding "flying critters", I have a unique situation at our house. Our youngest gave me a birdhouse with a video camera inside a few years back. Feeds my upstairs TV and VCR. Last year a pair of flying squirrels moved in Christmas Day and proceeded to make babies.

Unfortunately the entire nest was gone one morning and the VCR revealed a raccoon had raided the nest and eventully was able to catch the lone female in the nsst at the time, before the babies came. The raccoon could reach every corner of the box and stripped the nesting out first.

Over the summer I made the entry hole much deeper by gluing a thick block of wood behind the hole and drilling it out. The idea is to keep the raccoons from bending their arm at the elbow so they can't reach the bottom of the nest. So far the new couple in there are doing just fine. Hope this modification works. I am on tape 12 so far this year.

A thick piece of slate on the outside keeps critters from enlarging the hole.

We are looking forward to seeing the bablies.

Enjoying your site,

Jim/Oldtimer Speaks Out

Michaelann Bewsee said...

Thanks, Jim. Let me know how it turns out with your flying squirrels (never seen one)!