The above was a mystery. It's been scattered in one particular place on the patio for the past week or so. Yes, it is ummm...poo. But what kind? Rodent apparently. I could not figure out why a mouse or rat would stop on my patio, drop a bunch of stuff, and leave...I was puzzled. After a while I decided it was coming from the recessed lights in the patio...but what was up there? And how did it get up there?
Mystery was solved just after sunset last night when I was netting the pond and closing gates. Something that resembled a small black felt chalkboard eraser, with wings, fluttered by. Oh! That's what it is: a bat! A bat is living in the space between the light bulb and the recessed light fixture. Do I need to build a bat house? That would be a better place for the bat than a lighting fixture.
Here in Southern California bats are losing habitat and need our help. They are voracious consumers of mosquitos, beetles, and moths. So, where to put a bat house? Away from the patio, for sure. The Google informs me bat houses belong on the south or east side of a house. Bats need protection from ground-based predators like raccoons and flying predators like hawks. During the day, bats enter a kind of calorie-saving torpor--the warmth of the sun helps them save energy and stay warm, which means the south or east side of a house. The bat was probably attracted to the pond and all the insects that fly above the water. Okay, check into bat houses. Never a dull moment around here, grumble grumble.
I wish I could get a picture of the bat fluttering in the night, satin black on a black velvet sky.
Green beans are much easier to get a shot of. The green beans I planted I think two Tuesdays ago are doing well:
It was 107 F (41 C) yesterday, the hottest day of the year. The well-watered green beans appeared to enjoy it. I stayed in the house almost all day enjoying the luxury of air conditioning cranked down to 75F. In a brief foray outside I captured an inadvertent self-portrait while getting a picture of last week's gopher damage. It does look like the self-portrait of someone who gives refuge to bats, don't you think?