My Creepy Encounter with a Bat
Let me start my story by admitting, just the memory of this incident gives me chills. I don't know too many people that are real fond of bats. Everything about them is creepy and scary. They look like little vampires with their leathery looking webbed wings, sharp looking teeth, pointy ears, and what about those weird little eyes.
When I was a kid growing up in Minnesota, there were several times we found bats in our house. Of course when this happened it was a chaotic scene. My dad and brothers would hunt for baseball bats and brooms in order to slay the intrusive mammal. The thing that creeped me out the most was how they hung upside down from our living room beams. For a teenage girl, this was the end of the world. I remember thinking I would never go in the house again, even if the bats were gone. I wish I had pictures of these bat encounters. My brothers would put on helmets or winter hats to protect them from the diving bats.
My Unnerving Bat Experience
Enough with the bat stories of childhood. Fast forward to two years ago. I was in my white cotton nightgown and settling in for the night. My dog was whining as I watched t.v., which meant he wanted to go out to do his duty. I situated him on a leash and walked into the beautiful spring night. I was standing in the middle of the yard, patiently waiting for my dog to do his duty. As I stood there looking up in the sky, I noticed something coming at me. By the time I could make out what it was, it was right in front of my face. The bat dove at me and lightly nicked the top of my head. I was freaking out and screaming. As I started running towards the house with dog in tow, I looked back, and to my horror, the bat was coming at me again. I made it to the top of the stairs at the front of the house. I reached for the doorknob like my life depended on it. I could feel my hair being tugged and felt the bat touch my head as it flew in, then out of my hair. I let out a blood curdling scream. I threw myself into the house and practically fell on the floor.
Recounting my Scary Bat Experience
The neighbor across the street heard the commotion and came to see what was going on. I was out of breath as I recounted my story. Neither one of us could believe how aggressive the bat was. Needless to say, Joey the dog never did his duty that night. There was no way I was going back out there. I don't know if it was the white pajamas I was wearing or what was troubling the sinister bat. All I know for sure is, that bat wanted me bad!
Why Bats Attack
According to an article by the batguy.com of NUISANCE WILDLIFE CONTROL SERVICE, Bats are often persecuted due to the fact that most people have no understanding of bat ecology and the important role they play in controlling night-flying insects. Bats are not blind, and they do not intentionally get tangled in your hair. Many people seem to think that all bats have rabies. This is not true. Quite the contrary, as less than 1% ever contract rabies, and it is highly unusual for a bat to contact a person, though a sick bat may have no fear of a human or other animals. Almost every person who gets bit does so because they pick up a sick or injured bat. Like any other wild animal, bats should never be handled at any time, especially when found on the ground or in a home.
Bats do not attack people, (NWCS) and a fear of bats is caused by a lack of education about them. Their echolocation system enables them to locate a tiny insect flying in total darkness. How could anyone think they would run into a person? When people are outdoors at night, insects are attracted to us by heat and smell. The reason bats sometimes appear to be swooping towards us is due to the fact they are simply zoning in on the insects we attract. The next time you see a bat pass close by, you should be thankful. It may have just eaten a West Nile Virus infected mosquito that was about to bite you! Bats only become a problem when they decide to use an attic or other section of a home or building for a roosting or nursery colony.
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© 2011 Linda Rogers
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