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Thursday, 25 August 2011

A mouse in the apartment is worth none in the field

The last couple of weeks have been  interesting. A week ago on Sunday, we were woken up by a ruffling sound coming from behind the settee at 4:30 AM. We tend to sleep in the lounge during summer because we use the available air conditioning to cool the 28C night-times. We drag out the mattress and snooze happily on the floor.

So, at 4:30 I hear a sound and wake up my wife. It sounds like an animal making a lot of noise in our house. After my wife retreats to the bedroom I drag the mattress away. Upon coming back into the lounge I see something small and black fly through the air from behind the settee. I have no idea where it went. I reason that it was either a bird or a bat.

We barricade ourselves into the bedroom (with a towel blocking off the doorway gap) and fall asleep. At 6:30 I'm awake and I can hear some scrabbling and I go to investigate. I still couldn't find anything.

Later in the day I decide it was a bat. I couldn't find evidenced of a bird. A bird would have become agitated and then probably died behind something. I decide to go bat hunting. I've never done bat hunting before, so my wife looks up on the internet how to do this. Unfortunately she discovers that bats can carry rabies. Not wanting to die a painful death we try to find out what to do. Unfortunately being Sunday, the animal control people are unavailable (I was unaware that stray animals took weekends off). I phoned the health clinics and was passed around 5 times, including back to the initial clinic to a doctor who said we needed a rabies shot because we didn't know whether we had been bitten in our sleep.

So, we went to A&E and had a rabies shot. We were informed that we'd need extra shots 3, 7 and 14 days later.

Later in the week, the pest control people came around and told us it was actually a mouse that we had (I didn't know that mice could jump a long way into the air - I was sure it was a bat). We then had to vacate the house while they put up traps. Once the critter was caught, we set about disinfecting the entire property.

We're back home now, but the mouse has caused us a huge hassle. On the plus side we used the opportunity to rearrange our living space for the arrival of our firstborn in a few weeks time.