What's fighting in the bat box!
It's not that often that I use this blog page for personal experiences, usually my blogs are about products or habitats, time of year etc, but I think this experience worthy of recording.
At our house we have put up four 1FF Schwegler (there you are I got the product in!) bat boxes, each facing a different direction, the ones facing West, East and South are definitely habited, I hope by bats, but am aware of the law stating you must not interceder with bats , so I have never opened them to see what is inside, but there is evidence of bat droppings below the boxes so I am pretty happy with that.
However - on Thursday (13.10.16) I was walking across the yard and could hear a tiny squeal coming from somewhere close by, we often hear these sorts of things and it is usually a bird in trouble, so when I heard the noise I set about tracing the origin. Sure enough I looked up to the bat box an hanging out of the bottom was a small birds tail, and then it was squealing and got pulled back inside, then it's wing dropped out and it was clearly in distress and trying to escape. I could actually hear the assailant hitting the birds head inside the box. A tiny little tap tap tap, but each time the small bird would squeal and it was horrible.
Well, law or no law I could not just stand below the box and watch as this little bird met it's end in pain, so I went and fetched the step ladder and put it against the wall, but no, the ladder was too short and by now this little bird was being dragged inside the bat box and I could imagine it was about to meet it's end. So I ran and fetched the big double ladder and up I went.
I was pretty sure I was not going to like what I found inside the bat box and by now had convinced myself it would be a rat. The only way to open the 1FF bat box is to let the front down and this would mean my head would have to be at the same height in order to help the bird to escape. By now I had seen the wing and tail of the bird enough to know it was a Blue Tit.
I got up level with the box and could hear the goings on - too harrowing for description in this blog - so I opened the front and looked in...............
What do you think I found?
Two Blue Tits! and the assailant, who was most surprised to be caught in the act, he was startled and a milli second of "what's happening" before he flew off at speed, a fraction of a second more and the victim did likewise, as he headed for the trees, he seemed no worse for the attack.
I don't usually interfere with nature as it has it's own way of sorting things out, but I could not stand by and watch this happen, so I don't know if you agree with my actions or not, but it was an education for me!
Also as there were no bats in the box I think I am safe from the law, and I will move the box now (it has been in this position now for three years) and clearly has not had any use as the inside is perfectly clean. I was glad it was not a Rat inside the box, but sad that a Blue Tit could be so aggressive.