Saturday, January 21, 2017

January 21: Bat Houses

Bat House #2
Steps: 14,386

Activity: Hike with the dogs. Housework. Bat Boxes.

Weight: Don't ask.

Book: Half Earth (still)

Slept in this morning. Kylie and I hung out a bit together before she had to go to dance. I had plans on seeing a couple of patients today---but that all evaporated when I took the dogs for a walk. After all, I do have this New Year's Resolution to not work weekends. Might as well keep it.

And so I did a project that I have been meaning to do for years: I put up Bat Houses.

I have a problems with bats. They like to crawl into a place in the wall and hang out in the winter. I have discovered that peppermint is absolutely hated by bats, so I tack up a bit of that and it drives them away. When they are living up in the ceiling, it is a bit creepy to listen to them squeak and scratch around up there. It is worse for Kylie because I have lost some hearing in the upper registers, so I don't hear them as much. They tend to just winter up there (the loafers taking advantage of the free heat from the wood stove). In the summer, they must find a place that has air conditioning.

The peppermint works for a few months, but it wears off and they return. Today I put up four Bat Houses, tacked to trees, with the hopes the bats will find that a bit more homey. The species of bat is actually called "Little Brown Bats" (LBB). Seriously.

Bats are very helpful. In the summer, you rarely see a bug anywhere, and it is fun to watch the LBB's fly with their acrobatic precision. And we all know that bats are in steep decline due to an illness that is characterized by a "white nose". Bat mortality rates are frightenly high, to the point that scientists are worried about losing several species to extinction. I consulted the American Bat Society, and they recommended that the bat houses be, at least, 10 feet high. 20 feet is optimal. Being scared of heights, I decided that 10 feet is fine for my LBB's.

Hope it works.

Kylie and I watched the Woman's March on CSpan today. What an inspiring spectacle! 500,000 marchers. Millions in the US turned out in hundreds of cities, world wide, to protest the Inauguration of the Shithead. Good. I took a pass on this protest. I have a feeling there will be further opportunities to express displeasure with the OverCombed One.

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