Ranch Wildlife: When Bats Attack

Last Thursday night started out as a relatively typical evening on The Ranch.  My Beloved and I had taken our assigned seats in the living room–me on the side chair with my new knitting project and him on the couch with Diego and Tiberius next to him.  As usual, with sole, unrelenting custody of the remote, he was  flipping through the channels in search of shows featuring guns, gun smithing, game poaching, gold mining, explosions, mixed martial arts, or extreme violence.  Sometimes I wonder if taking up knitting was a sort of subconscious defense mechanism, tripped by my feminine-city dweller DNA.  Knitting is truly the perfect distraction.  Thankfully, it confines my “testosterone TV” exposure to the limits of my peripheral vision.  Gone are the days when I could watch French TV and foreign films on my couch with reckless abandon.

About an hour into our nightly routine, while My Beloved was tucking into a second episode of “Homeland” (a show I actually like) our evening calm swiftly descended into chaos, for me at least.  In a chillingly calm voice, which I now believe is a ritualistic method by which he attempts to prevent a full scale freak out on my part, he says, “Wow, I can’t believe that is in here.”  His voice was so calm that I did not immediately look up.  It was only when he slowly started to get up, that I bothered to look up from my “knit 2, purl 2” sweater ribbing.  When my eyes met his, I could see something fast and brown flying in large circles around the living room.  At first, I thought, “that is a huge moth.”  Heavens no foolish woman!  It was a bat.  A BAT!!!

little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus)

little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus) (Photo credit: K.P. McFarland)

I was seized by panic.  I could feel the adrenaline washing over me.  What in the name of all that is holy was a bat doing in my living room?  The bat flew in furious, frantic circles.  Out of nowhere it started diving towards our heads.  That is when I hit the deck. I was overcome with images of it getting caught in my hair or latching onto my neck.  Seeing me assume crash position on the floor, while we were under attack, sent My Beloved into fits of hysterical laughter.  Of course he had his wits about him!  Like the even keel Ranch Man he is, he simply walked over to the front door and opened it.  After doing a few more laps in our living room, the wayward flying mammal quickly found its way out and went on its batty way.  How he got into the house in the first place, remains a mystery.

I can say with confidence that I have no innate fear of the myotis lucifugus that graced our living room that night.  I actually think that bats are reasonably cute, as long as they are not rabid.  It is just a bit shocking to have one flying around my living room, without an invitation, warning, or the proper mental preparation (on my part.)  Seeing as though I am on the road to “Ranch Hard,” maybe next time  little myotis makes his appearance, I will offer him a treat.

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