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TomJH

So A Bat Flew Into My House The Other Evening . . .

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It happened, I'm guessing, when I brought the dog back in through the porch door. The next thing I know a mouse with wings is flying around my living room. Only this guy flies fast and you really have to turn your head quickly to see where he's going next.

 

I grabbed a towel, ready to throw it over him when he lands. Only he's not landing, just flying around, obviously in a panic. He wanted out of there, but no more than I did. I ran through the house, quickly shutting doors to other rooms to limit his flight area. When I return to the living room the bat is no where to be seen. He has landed and, being no bigger than a mouse with his wings tucked in, he's murder to spot. There are, quite frankly, a lot of dark spots in which to hide, furniture to hide under or cabinets to hide behind. Cabinets, by the way, filled with items that weigh a ton and a half to move.

 

I spent an hour looking for the bat then decided to go to bed, taking my dog with me, and, of course, closing the bedroom door behind me.

 

The next day I did a search of the living room or, to be more precise, pretty much a teardown of everything followed by a reassemble. Cabinets emptied and moved to peer behind, chairs and a sofa turned upside down. I found dust balls larger than myself but no bat. This took about four or five hours and I was in no mood to then tear my kitchen apart, where he could be hiding, as well.

 

That evening I turned out all the lights in the house, except for two, the hallway and bathroom. I then waited in the dark for the bat to hopefully start to fly around. An hour passed and nothing happened.

 

I then ventured into the well lit hallway and turned out that light. I took a look in the bathroom, spotting nothing, then turned out that light, the house now in total darkness. As I turned out the bathroom light, however, I heard what sounded like something brushing against the door behind me.

 

I immediately turned the light back on and went into the bathroom. There was the bat swooping through the air and in a panic to get out. I immediately closed the bathroom door, grabbed a towel and said out loud, "Now you're mine, bat. You've got no where to go!"

 

Big Mistake! The next thing I know the bat's no longer there. But what is there is some dude in a cape giving me the big stare and saying. "Look. Into. My. Eyes."

 

And he's also flashing his teeth at me in a really nasty fashion.

 

I quickly reach into my pocket then think, "Where is a cell phone when you really need it?"

 

Fortunately the dude with the teeth slipped on a bar of soap on the floor, cracking his head on my bath tub. I dragged him outside, dumping him on my lawn. I ran back inside the house, then watched from the front window as he turned back into a bat and flew away.

 

Now for some reason some people are having trouble with my story. But it's all true.

 

Well. most of it, anyway. I'll admit that the bit about the dust balls being bigger than me was a bit of an exaggeration.

 

Anyone else get bats in their home, and how did you handle it? Did you know that there is no cure for rabies? Get it and you're dead. There is an inoculation you can take right after a bite that may, or will, save you from getting rabies. But act casually after an animal (or dude in a cape) bite and catch the virus and you can't be saved. Period. As in No Cure.

 

I took my dog in for a rabies shot the following day in spite of the fact that he had a three year shot last year. Now I don't think the bat was anywhere near him but I'm taking no chances. My vet, from India, told me that 27,000 die a year in her home country, usually bitten by either bats or dogs. A friend of her's died of rabies, in fact.

 

We don't think all that much about rabies but it's nothing to mess around with. Even something that seems more like a nuisance (like a bat getting in your house) can have potentially tragic consequences. Somewhere I read that up to 5% of bats have the disease.

 

I may have been joking around with my story a bit but rabies is no joke. If you're bitten by a wild animal you should get an inoculation shot IMMEDIATELY!!!! It may save your life, even though I understand they can be pricey.

 

Again, though, anyone here with any bat stories? And how did you handle it if they got in your home?

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Did the bat get out of the house alive? Poor thing.

I don't know how much you would be "poor thinging" him if you tore a room apart without being about to find him, Hibi.

 

Yeah, I wrapped a towel around him and put the towel on the ground outside. Within three seconds he was out from the towel and flying away to spook another home.

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Tom, I'm sympathetic to your uninvited bat visit - (hey, good thing you hadn't invited him in, you would have had even more trouble than you did getting rid of him !) I know I'd be freaked out by a bat flying around in my house, plus, I have two cats who I'm sure would have tried to catch it, thus exposing themselves potentially to rabies. And their shots are not up-to-date.

 

(This is because they're "indoor" cats, they never go out, and the rabies shots are very expensive. I love my cats, I'm not a negligent pet-owner, but it would cost me a few hundred dollars, because they have to have two shots, blabblahblah - I just can't afford it, and anyway, I keep my kitties indoors.

Big digression, sorry...)

 

Back to the bats: yes, there's a very real danger of getting rabies if  you're bitten by a bat. Which is a more common event than many people believe. Kind of like the vampire lore they're associated with, you can get a bat bite when you're asleep, and not even know it. Then a few days later, you develop rabies symptoms ! As Tom said, could be too late to do anything about it by then ! 

 

I don't know why bats seem to be the main creatures who carry rabies. Foxes, too. But we're less likely to come into contact with a fox  (no raunchy jokes, please!) than a bat.

 

Ok, having said all that, I'm actually not done. There's something else I want to say about bats:

 

Bats are extremely important to us. They consume a huge number of insects - including mosquitoes ( from which we can catch West Nile Virus disease), and contribute in several positive ways to the environmental health of whatever area they inhabit.

 

And they're in danger of becoming an at-risk species. There's a bat disease -  I think it's called "White Nose Syndrome", something like that- that is destroying the bat population. 

There are many species of bats, I believe some are more affected than others by this disease.

 

My daughter ( now a graduate  student in environmental studies)  participated in a research project which involved tracking this illness in bats. She had to have a full set of rabies shots ( 3, I think, several weeks apart) before being allowed to work on this study. She had to wear bat-proof gear which included several layers of gloves. 

 

Anyway, she actually really enjoyed the bat project, and she certainly learned a lot about bats. Now, instead of being creeped out by them, she thinks they're cute !

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Tom, I'm sympathetic to your uninvited bat visit - (hey, good thing you hadn't invited him in, you would have had even more trouble than you did getting rid of him !) I know I'd be freaked out by a bat flying around in my house, plus, I have two cats who I'm sure would have tried to catch it, thus exposing themselves potentially to rabies. And their shots are not up-to-date.

 

 

Bats are extremely important to us. They consume a huge number of insects - including mosquitoes ( from which we can catch West Nile Virus disease), and contribute in several positive ways to the environmental health of whatever area they inhabit.

 

MissW, I fully understand why anyone with in-door cats would not spend the money on rabies shots. (All the more reason to understandably freak if a bat got in your house).

 

While wanting to tell my little bat tale, though, I also thought it important to warn posters about the deadliness of rabies. I didn't know there was no cure for it if you got it. You get rabies and, according to one source I read, you may be dead in less than a week. Which, to put it mildly, is pretty darned frightening. That's why, wild animal or strange dog or cat biten, you MUST have an inoculation against rabies.

 

I couldn't agree with you more, though, about the importance of bats as a part of our environmental system for insect control. A former boss of mine, in fact, had a bat house installed on his cottage roof. All his neighbours thought he was nuts, but he said he was the only cottager in the area that wasn't eaten alive by mosquitoes when he was on his property.

 

Although my story may not have sounded like it, I like bats. Maybe that makes me sound a little batty but I think they're quite fascinating creatures. That's why when the bat was swooping around me in my living room (at one point one of his wings brushed against my face) I didn't try to knock him to the floor with the towel in my hand for fear that I would injure him. Bats have very fragile bones in their wings and, once on the floor, are somewhat helpless, and vulnerable. When I finally did capture him in that towel I made a point of holding him in it quite gently before releasing him. He flew away, scared, but in good condition.

 

I commend your daughter for her research study for the White Nose Syndrome, or whatever that bat disease may be called. I certainly don't want to see bats become another endangered species. We've far too many of those already.

 

There's a park behind my home where I occasionally see bats at dusk, and this is actually the third time in the last seven or eight years in which I got one in my house. The first two times, though, they were somewhere in my bedroom. It was still hard to find them but I finally did. The first was attached to the back of a cabinet which was, I swear, no more than an inch from a wall. The second I found by removing the drawers from a dresser and tipping it on its side. The bat was stuck on the bottom of the dresser.

 

This third bat, of course, came out of his hiding place in a dark house and was drawn to the light.

 

By the way, when I captured all three bats in a towel on those three different occasions all three emitted a high tiny kind of shrieking sound. All three also flew away in good health to haunt another day.

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I don't know how much you would be "poor thinging" him if you tore a room apart without being about to find him, Hibi.

 

Yeah, I wrapped a towel around him and put the towel on the ground outside. Within three seconds he was out from the towel and flying away to spook another home.

 

 

True. LOL. I do feel sorry for animals that get trapped inside and are frantic to get out........

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Tom, I'm sympathetic to your uninvited bat visit - (hey, good thing you hadn't invited him in, you would have had even more trouble than you did getting rid of him !) I know I'd be freaked out by a bat flying around in my house, plus, I have two cats who I'm sure would have tried to catch it, thus exposing themselves potentially to rabies. And their shots are not up-to-date.

 

(This is because they're "indoor" cats, they never go out, and the rabies shots are very expensive. I love my cats, I'm not a negligent pet-owner, but it would cost me a few hundred dollars, because they have to have two shots, blabblahblah - I just can't afford it, and anyway, I keep my kitties indoors.

Big digression, sorry...)

 

Back to the bats: yes, there's a very real danger of getting rabies if  you're bitten by a bat. Which is a more common event than many people believe. Kind of like the vampire lore they're associated with, you can get a bat bite when you're asleep, and not even know it. Then a few days later, you develop rabies symptoms ! As Tom said, could be too late to do anything about it by then ! 

 

I don't know why bats seem to be the main creatures who carry rabies. Foxes, too. But we're less likely to come into contact with a fox  (no raunchy jokes, please!) than a bat.

 

Ok, having said all that, I'm actually not done. There's something else I want to say about bats:

 

Bats are extremely important to us. They consume a huge number of insects - including mosquitoes ( from which we can catch West Nile Virus disease), and contribute in several positive ways to the environmental health of whatever area they inhabit.

 

And they're in danger of becoming an at-risk species. There's a bat disease -  I think it's called "White Nose Syndrome", something like that- that is destroying the bat population. 

There are many species of bats, I believe some are more affected than others by this disease.

 

My daughter ( now a graduate  student in environmental studies)  participated in a research project which involved tracking this illness in bats. She had to have a full set of rabies shots ( 3, I think, several weeks apart) before being allowed to work on this study. She had to wear bat-proof gear which included several layers of gloves. 

 

Anyway, she actually really enjoyed the bat project, and she certainly learned a lot about bats. Now, instead of being creeped out by them, she thinks they're cute !

 

 

Yes, agree. They eat tons of insects and pollinate a lot of fruit and flowers (esp. in the tropics) and they are on their way out, due to loss of habitat and disease.......

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Yes, agree. They eat tons of insects and pollinate a lot of fruit and flowers (esp. in the tropics) and they are on their way out, due to loss of habitat and disease.......

 

Right, Hibi.

 

In fact, I know Tom posted this thread partly as a funny and interesting story to share, and partly to raise alertness to the very real danger of contracting rabies from bats.

However, in a way it would fit right in on his "Warning ! Anyone noticed fewer Butterflies around?" thread, which is of course all about how various factors are adversely affecting our environment, particularly the loss of habitat and new diseases for pollinators like butterflies and bees ( and bats.)

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However, in a way it would fit right in on his "Warning ! Anyone noticed fewer Butterflies around?" thread, which is of course all about how various factors are adversely affecting our environment, particularly the loss of habitat and new diseases for pollinators like butterflies and bees ( and bats.)

Thanks for adding this to the thread, MissW. It's a very valid point.

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When I was staying at my folks' cabin when they were out of town a few years back I ran across 2 bats flying around the kitchen area (which has a very high ceiling).  There was nothing I could do about it so they went back to their belfry -- or wherever they had been hanging out.  I told my folks about it when they came back, but we were all mystified how they got in. 

 

     Also, I've seen the same amount of butterflies this year as I did the year before.  They seem to enjoy landing on my front door mat -- which is an area covered by an overhang -- and stretching out their wings.  I see them cos my front door has 9 glass panels on it so it's easy to see out.  When I parked my Falcon out front recently I saw a butterfly on the hood.  I then went out to put whatever it was in my car and the butterfly flew off and onto the ground about 5 feet away.  After I'd gone back in I looked outside my front door a few minutes later and the butterfly had flown back on the hood and was flexing its wings.  My guess:  A happy butterfly.  :)  

 

     Further, given this is a movie site may I recommend the 1979 movie 'NIGHTWING'.  About vampire bats and Indian magic and lore in the Desert Southwest.  I've seen it twice and found it more enjoyable than I thought I would. 

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A few years ago I was bit by a neighborhood cat. I revisited the area two weeks later and saw that the cat was still alive. I was home free. An animal may carry the virus and bite you but unless it is sick at the time of the bite you won't be infected. This the why animals are quaranteened for a required 10 days (animal usually dies within 5-6 days but they use 10 to be sure). If the animal is alive after ten days and not sick you are okay, if the animal has died, they start you on this series of shots. The catch is that there are a couple of days in there where the animal may be sick but not show it yet, so infection could occur then.

 

I called my local Animal Control and described the cat and they went out but couldn't find it. They knocked on doors. If they had found it they either take the cat with them and impound for ten days, or if they feel the owners are responsible they will ask them to keep the cat indoors for ten days and report to them at the end of that time. 

 

Of course if the animal is in the wild, having the shots is probably the thing to do just to be safe. But even if the animal is infected, it cannot deliver the virus unless it is sick, just carrying the virus won't do it. That reduces the odds significantly of infection.

 

Best thing to do is call Animal Control if you have an incident. They know everything.

=

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One night, a few years ago, I realized I hadn't seen the top of my desk in a while (I was cat vacuuming), so began sorting, filing, etc.. When I was done, I had a clean desk (not really worth the effort -- it looked exactly like I remembered it) and a small bag of trash. On my way to the garbage can, something flew at me. I instinctively raised my hand to protect my face, and the next thing I knew, I was holding a tiny ball of fur, and it was biting me!

 

Fortunately, I had the presence of mind to not let it go. I took it inside, put it into a Tupperware sandwich-keeper and popped it in the fridge while I changed clothes. By the time I was ready to go to the emergency room, it was fast asleep.

 

It was the weekend, so the bat couldn't be tested for rabies right away. They began the shots, some at the location of the bites. I had to go back the next day and once after that. I didn't have to complete the series because the bat had tested negative.

 

The thing which gets me is the utter impossibility of catching a bat mid-flight, if you intend to. I've known people who've tried to catch them in butterfly nets; none succeeded. To catch one by hand . . . 

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A few years ago I was bit by a neighborhood cat. I revisited the area two weeks later and saw that the cat was still alive. I was home free. An animal may carry the virus and bite you but unless it is sick at the time of the bite you won't be infected. This the why animals are quaranteened for a required 10 days (animal usually dies within 5-6 days but they use 10 to be sure). If the animal is alive after ten days and not sick you are okay, if the animal has died, they start you on this series of shots. The catch is that there are a couple of days in there where the animal may be sick but not show it yet, so infection could occur then.

 

Thanks very much for the info, Iafitte.

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That's a heck of a story, Capuchin. You've got nerve of steel to hang onto that bat.

 

It sounds like just bad luck. You probably surprised it or perhaps he was scared and even flew at you by accident.

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It sounds like just bad luck. You probably surprised it or perhaps he was scared and even flew at you by accident.

 

 

I figure it was fate's balance -- I did something virtuous (cleaning), so I had to be punished (shots and paying for er visit).

 

As for surprising it, I thought at the time it was probably rabid because flying close to a person is abnormal behavior, which is one of the signs it's sick. Now, I don't know. (Masha says it's to be expected -- bats eat pests, and I'm the biggest one it ever saw.)

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A few years ago I was bit by a neighborhood cat. I revisited the area two weeks later and saw that the cat was still alive. I was home free. An animal may carry the virus and bite you but unless it is sick at the time of the bite you won't be infected. This the why animals are quaranteened for a required 10 days (animal usually dies within 5-6 days but they use 10 to be sure). If the animal is alive after ten days and not sick you are okay, if the animal has died, they start you on this series of shots. The catch is that there are a couple of days in there where the animal may be sick but not show it yet, so infection could occur then.

 

I called my local Animal Control and described the cat and they went out but couldn't find it. They knocked on doors. If they had found it they either take the cat with them and impound for ten days, or if they feel the owners are responsible they will ask them to keep the cat indoors for ten days and report to them at the end of that time. 

 

Of course if the animal is in the wild, having the shots is probably the thing to do just to be safe. But even if the animal is infected, it cannot deliver the virus unless it is sick, just carrying the virus won't do it. That reduces the odds significantly of infection.

 

Best thing to do is call Animal Control if you have an incident. They know everything.

=

 

 

That's good to know. Didnt know that.

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Does anyone know why bats have a high incidence of rabies as opposed to other animals? Curious. Bat droppings (guano) make good fertilizer. You can buy bags of them............

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I figure it was fate's balance -- I did something virtuous (cleaning), so I had to be punished (shots and paying for er visit).

 

As for surprising it, I thought at the time it was probably rabid because flying close to a person is abnormal behavior, which is one of the signs it's sick. Now, I don't know. (Masha says it's to be expected -- bats eat pests, and I'm the biggest one it ever saw.)

 

 

What happened to the bat? Just curious. I'm thankful I've had no close encounters like that. I respect their place in the ecosystem, but dont want to be near them............

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What happened to the bat? Just curious. I'm thankful I've had no close encounters like that. I respect their place in the ecosystem, but dont want to be near them............

With a bat it will be destroyed and its brain tested for rabies.

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The Off Topic Chit-Chat forum lately....

 

 

 

 

 

 

f008691464758c9c780693711e3a35f9.jpg

 

"Lions and Tigers...and now BATS, oh my!"

 

(...sorry Tom, couldn't resist) ;)

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and I named it "Joan Crawford".

 

Well, for Tom's sake, I'm sure glad it wasn't one of those dreaded CLOWN bats like THIS...

 

 

 

5894388055_287eaae02e_z.jpg

 

'Cause knowing Tom as I do, THAT would've REALLY freaked the poor guy out!!!

 

LOL

 

(...sorry again, Tom) ;)

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One night, a few years ago, I realized I hadn't seen the top of my desk in a while (I was cat vacuuming), so began sorting, filing, etc.. When I was done, I had a clean desk (not really worth the effort -- it looked exactly like I remembered it) and a small bag of trash. On my way to the garbage can, something flew at me. I instinctively raised my hand to protect my face, and the next thing I knew, I was holding a tiny ball of fur, and it was biting me!

 

Fortunately, I had the presence of mind to not let it go. I took it inside, put it into a Tupperware sandwich-keeper and popped it in the fridge while I changed clothes. By the time I was ready to go to the emergency room, it was fast asleep.

 

It was the weekend, so the bat couldn't be tested for rabies right away. They began the shots, some at the location of the bites. I had to go back the next day and once after that. I didn't have to complete the series because the bat had tested negative.

 

The thing which gets me is the utter impossibility of catching a bat mid-flight, if you intend to. I've known people who've tried to catch them in butterfly nets; none succeeded. To catch one by hand . . . 

 

My worry-wart mind would have concluded right away that the bat was probably sick. Bats fly in the dark and can't see very well but they have this infalliable sonar system that tells them where they can go without hitting something. For a bat to make that kind of navigational error to fly right into your hand like that could mean that it was physically impaired in some way, i.e,, sick. Glad that turned out well for you,

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