When Matt and I were passing through town for merely a night’s stay at home, we took only the barest essentials and brought them upstairs in one trip. After we both settled down for the night, I heard some noise coming from the horizontal vent above, but just before, the front door. That’s where the air gets sucked into by the furnace. But this noise was a climbing sound of small feet. AND I COULD SMELL SOMETHING ALIVE and possibly quite juicy, and hear it breathing its little quick breaths of air. I knew immediately what it was ------ a BAT! A male bat, to boot!
Oh, it had been so long since I caught a bat and ripped its little wings off while hearing its little screams, egging me on to rip some more. So I sat below the vent...waiting....and waiting. Finally at about 5am (according to Matt) I started meowing loudly and longingly at the little creature, who straddled the grates staring down at me and thinking he was safe.
Matt could see some figure silouetted on the vent, too, and mumbled something about a mouse. Then the bat moved. He started climbing around on the grate toward his exit. For some reason Matt gasped and uttered "tarantula!" It was pretty early, after all. He ran to the kitchen and got some red container with a squeeze handle and ran back to me. Then he set it down and picked me up and carried me over to the kennel and locked me in! That bastard! Was I to miss out on some juicy, bat fricassee?
Matt started squirting the bat with this awful smelling stuff that obviously made him much too toxic for me to enjoy as a meal, but perhaps not too toxic to tear to pieces. The bat started climbing around to avoid the spray, as he seemed to not like it much. Then he climbed onto the smaller, vertical outside vent (facing the hallway) that Matt could see through the ceiling vent where the bat had been stalked by me. THEN Matt saw it was a bat. "That’s a bat!" Matt said. "I think I got him dizzy," he added.
So Matt took a towel and lowered the ceiling door from which stairs unfolded, and slowly climbed up the little staircase ladder and switched on the light. Apparently Matt forgot that bats avoid light, as his quarry (MY friggin quarry!) crawled up the side of the outside vent and disappeared. With no hole in the wall facing the outside hallway, he must have found a secret passage between two slabs of drywall, making his way to some other lucky cat’s apartment.
Word has it that the maintenance guy took a shop vac into our attic and searched for MY bat and found nothing. So a heavy screen mesh was used to cover the whole outer vent to keep the bat and his very toxic feces out of the apartment. And just to be safe, Matt bought some sticky paper at Walmart to lay around the attic floor next time we pass through again. But if that little fellah makes his way into the furnace air ducts and comes out one of the openings in the middle of the livingroom, I’ll be there. Wherever there is squeaking, I’ll be there. Where Matt sleeps and bats may swoop for a quick meal of blood, I’ll be there. I am a very light sleeper when little sounds are near. I will have my ounce of flesh...someday.
(photo borrowed from Bat Guys)