At first, I thought the startling noise I heard was a mouse ... maybe in the wall? Scratching around. So, I tried to locate it, but every time I'd move around the house to find the spot, the noise would stop. I could just see, in my imagination, a little mouse just creating a mess, wherever he was. And the scratching and tinging (near a sauce pan?? in the cupboard??) continued!
Finally, I happened to be in the right place at the right time, and realized that something was in my wood stove! With the door closed, I couldn't see in, and I was scared to look! I could just imagine that nasty mouse jumping out at me, since that was the image I couldn't shake from my mind. But a mouse in the wood stove? How would he get in there? Well, they do show up in the darnedest places!
My fear was that I would have to just wait till "it" died in there, and then I'd get it out. But I shared my story with Kris F. last night over the phone, and she said, "I bet it's a bird. I've had to get TWO out of my fireplace this spring, and I've got a great invention for capturing it."
A bird?? Of course! A bird isn't nearly as icky as a mouse... so if it could be saved, that would make me feel so much better! Kris offered to drive over immediately and check it out. I took her up on the offer. She did say that it could be a bat...and that wouldn't be so good; we might not want to tangle with a bat.
Between the two of us, we put a piece of chicken wire (yea for having bits and pieces of fencing around the place) in front of the opening as we opened the wood stove door. With a flashlight we could see the bird...and boy was it fired up, flapping for freedom and stirring up a cloud of ashes in our faces.
When we took the screen away, and Kris attempted to capture it in her basket, the bird made a desperate move for freedom and got away, flying into the room, right toward the dining room windows. Kris shrieked! (Expletive deleted.) It took a couple of tries, but because the bird was determined to get out the window, Kris trapped it against the glass by covering it with the basket. Then, we put a board between the glass and basket, and got the scared, sooty bird trapped enough to get it outside. And away it flew...fast as a missile. It looked the size and shape of a robin, but having spent all day trying to escape the ash-filled stove, the actual coloring was indistinguishable.
Yea for Kris' expertise and help!! The crisis is over!