So, I thought it was a bird. There was something grey and sparrow-sized that suddenly and out of nowhere was circling our dining room chandelier. It wasn't. bunny_hugger knew what it was, and got swiftly under cover, mostly the cover of her hoodie. It was a bat.
There've been bats living in the house much of the time bunny_hugger has lived here. I've heard them once. They had been in the attic, although we hadn't seen them in a long while and she supposed they were gone (more likely they were migrating or asleep). When I did the big roof patch job we didn't see any evidence of bats, which we took to be a sign that they'd decided our house wasn't worth their visiting. And apparently we were wrong. Apparently, I say, since the bat sure seemed to have come from the kitchen and while we can kind of work out how they might have got in through the attic, we can't figure how one would be in the kitchen.
I took action, with maybe more resolution than sense. Mostly, what I did was get over to the front door and open it, and the screen door, wide, and then tell the bat to go over there so it could leave the house. It kept flying in circles around the living room, and bapped against the wall several times. Finally it flew toward the door's alcove, and out again, and back to the door, and out again, and finally it flew into the acute angle formed between the open door and the wall. At this point I accused it of being stupid.
However, the bat noticed the crack between the door frame and the open door, and very slowly squeezed its way out through that and went into the early evening air. We haven't seen a bat back again, although since we hadn't seen a bat back before that in (for me) ever or (for bunny_hugger) the better part of a decade that doesn't necessarily mean much. Other than that we'll just have to get the roof repairs done soon, and hope that we can get bats excluded this summer.
Trivia: Some insects are able to continue to fly even in low-density helium atmospheres with an oxygen content of only five percent. Most insects seem to gain no advantage from oxygen contents as high as 35 percent. Source: Oxygen: The Molecule That Made The World, Nick Lane.
Currently Reading: The World of Swope: A Biography of Herbert Bayard Swope, E J Kahn Jr.