Thursday, May 5, 2016

A Certified Wildlife Habitat

WARNING: If you are not a fan of cute fuzzy flying mammals that are associated with Halloween, please DO NOT click over to the second page!

Here at Brandywine, we have what will eventually be an awesome back yard. It is a walled English garden, small enough to be manageable, but with a decidedly "overgrown" vibe. I think it was a mistake by the former owners, because they were older and probably couldn't take care of a garden anymore, so they planted English Ivy and Creeping Myrtle (vinca minor) EVERYWHERE and of course it took over the garden. I have been yanking/digging/carpet bombing this $hit for ten years, and I'm still not done!

In addition to the total overhaul, I am readying the yard to be a Certified Wildlife Habitat. (You can read about it here.) 

Even though we're in the city and on a busy road, we will fill the bill to become certified. We have plenty of places (up high and on the ground) that serve as protective cover for our bird friends. (We have two nests with babies right now.) We are adding native plants each time we clear out a new section of the garden, and we are working on where to incorporate water.

Which brings us to our new friend.

This little bat (smaller than my hand) showed up a few days ago, clinging to the screen of our kitchen window. He has disappeared every evening, but is back when we wake up.

We think he is there because our rain barrel is just a few feet away (our only water source right now, and it's not a preferred one), and it is a great place for him to find mosquitoes. He doesn't bother us, and he isn't at all creepy or scary. He just hangs around upside down, quietly.

DL has become quite attached to the little guy, and is now interested in building a bat house. (Instructions here. I think we'll need to actually see plans, because I'm not sure what a bat house needs, structurally.) 

Who knows? Maybe we'll have an entire colony of them by the time we're done. They can hang out with Skittles, the chipmunk who lives in our raised bed on our lower patio. The more, the merrier!!


Kathleen George said...

I sometimes see bats fly around here, as long as they do not turn in to Dracula and bite me;)
I cannot stand ivy, remember it to well pruning it when I was a kid and the creepy bugs in it, yuck!
It will be nice to have a retreat for the birds and bees. Little animals too.
Kathleen in Az

Rose L said...

I had a tiny bat at my place once hanging on a wood 3 panel screen I was preparing to paint. I had to move it. It was only the size of my thumb and so furry. I am considering a few bat houses around for him and friends. I am glad they are not on my house screens as when urinate or defecate while sleeping it would be messy.

Good Time Charlie said...

I love this!! We used to have bats that would come out and fly around this giant oak tree next to our poornewlymarried apartment, umm, 24 years ago! Would be cool to see them again.

Feral Turtle said...

That is so awesome Kirby!! Looking forward to seeing your bat colony soon.....they will come!

AnnMarie aka Vintage Junkie aka NaNa said...

That is so great what you are working on for your yard. Once it is done you can pass the time just watching all the critters! I think bats, small ones, are cute! We have had a few make their way into our house. Sadly both are no longer with can't have a bat flying around your house....that is when it gets creepy/scary!

Heidi @ Decor & More said...

Aw, I wonder where his family is? Might need a decent size "bat house" when all is said and done. :)
xo Heidi
PS -- Happy Mothers Day!! xoxoxo

Donnamae said...

Bat houses are usually just attached to houses around here. My neighbor has one. While not a fan....he's kind of cute! And they do love he's good to have around! It'll be interesting to see what you'll be doing! ;)

Andrea said...

I remember getting my grandfather a bat house years ago for out at camp where the bats flew around at dusk. He never hung it because he was afraid people would think he was attracting bats...fuzzy batty logic!

andi filante said...

I love that bat and I hate that bat simultaneously. I find him cute and freaky to the same degree. I'm feeling so confused right now. Wine.


Bliss said...

If he is gonna keep hanging around I think he needs a name.

karen@somewhatquirky said...

I want a bat to eat my mosquitoes. But I'm not sure we have enough mosquitoes to tempt them. Seems like bat houses aren't much different than bird houses...but maybe my memory is incorrect. Having bird nests in your trees is such a fun thing. You're a lucky lady.

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