Friday, 8 October 2010
The penchant for teenage vamp shows, all biting sex and dripping blood make tales of vamire bats seem positively tame these days. A word not usually associated with bats, tame. A "schoall of fish" and a "Tame of bats..." Put "tame" in front of any horrible creature you'd never normally want to touch, like a gerbil, we instantly feel compelled to protect them because they are cute little furry creatures. Children create a similar reaction. It's all a big con. My cynical view of modern societies' hierarchical values runs thus, childrens rights' supersede adults' rights which fall victim to animal rights. Adult humans are at the bottom of the food chain and unlike bats, we are neither feted or protected as an endangered species. Being on the "warped but savable in the future if the budget allows" rung of the species ladder means that self protection is paramount to my survival, so, when a frantic flying mouse is flapping round my head at 3am I'm afraid number one comes before numbers 45 to 50! We have shared many nocturnal adventures, my bats and I, commando crawling across the floor, encased in protective duvet armour and pillow helmet allows them to perfect their miniture red arrow display, kamikaze style. Having a minute brain seems unimportant when you can reach 20 miles an hour in an enclosed space while avoiding moving targets. Emergency braking is a skill honed in a short time by relentless vertical speed diving culminating in a sudden stop with just with a split second to spare before the desired target is either a. frightened to death or b.paralized by fear long enough for the intrepid bomber to regroup and scratch another notch on your limewashed A frame. Large ears actually deflect screams. This is a little known fact. Calling for help is futile. Their use of echo location as a means to test the vibe on a night out will work really well in your bedroom, especially if you have lots of wooden furniture. The reverberating sound is bat foreplay and the vibrations will start an orgy, but don't worry, lady bats, although voracious, have high morals and low expectations. The evolution of a facinating design feature allows them to store sperm until the warmer weather when they have an elective pregnancy on a date of their choice, followed by a comfortable and speedy delivery in their chosen equivalent on the Portland hospital. Wild arm flapping is also a useless deterrent as this is seen as a sign of cameraderie and high on your fear, will result in a bat fest to rival Glastonbury. Regardless of their enchanting display of petit press ups on my bedroom window as they settle to snooze the day away, I am not fooled! I am happy to co exist, if they exist outside. In Europe Bats do not feast on human blood or carry disease, apparently. On the plus side, they do eat up to 3000 insects each a night but despite their low carb diet and frenetic exercise regime they are, in many parts of the world, in decline. Quite a surprise given the current trend for this very regime among humans. Should we worry? is the low carb diet a government conspiracy in population control? I have my own theory however. Unchecked by years of census control, the missing bats of the world, simply, live in my house. I realise this may not be a popular theory among conservationists but given their ineffective tips on diversion and survival tactics, who sounds the most sane here? After all they have managed to avoid ownership of the term "batty" for years, when was the last time you thought "oh yes that person seems a bit like a bat expert to me." These Bat Experts (kind but deluded people who like bats)suggest several solutions and useful tips to encourage them to leave. Open the windows and doors, seems logical but impractical if you live in the uk where your fate will be rapid hypothermia. If you live in France you will be invaded by enough mosquitos to feed you hungry bats for a week. Once the doors and windows are open, and this is my absolutely favourite suggestion, they advise you to "Go Back To Bed". You now have either 30000 insects recreating the battle of Britain in stereo, or 20000 chilled ready meals with your best duvet as a tablecloth. The remaining intrepid fliers will nail the remaining sluggish mosquitoes as they bounce off the walls. Notoriously sociable, bats love a good all nighter with free food thrown in. A generous host can create a nice buoyant atmosphere by leaping about, maybe get a few friends in. However, like the drunk who won't leave at the end of the night, bats will persevere, despite attempts to get rid of them, till the last dance is danced and the final morsel is gone. Continual sleep deprivation will eventually win and you will actually consider letting the bats have the bedroom in lieu of a belfry. Over time you will learn to accept these harmless little creatures as part of your family, There may be more of them than your real children but their achievements, however small will impress you and unlike your children, they will sleep 12 hours a day and eat only insects. Toilet training, will, however, be an ongoing issue.