The neighborhood bats



By Peter Laue
PREVIEW Columnist

My, oh my, do we have a story for you, our Pagosa Springs friends. It’s a real story. It happened; it’s still in process and might have many more twists and turns to it. 

We moved into our log cabin dream home on the west end of Lake Pagosa 44 years ago with our two teenage children. There were only a handful of homes on the lake at that time. We had no phone and no house number. Our kids had to walk to the corner of Piedra Road and Cloud Cap Avenue to catch the school bus. That was a little under a mile. 

Unbeknown to us, before moving into our dream home, a congregation of bats had moved in. Since we moved there in late September of 1977, we were unaware of the bats. They had already gone into hibernation.

In early June of the following year, the bats woke up. Most of them flew outside and dirtied our windows, but a few found their way into the house. At first, our kids found it both hilarious and entertaining to chase them with badmintons. One day, they took a couple to school in plastic bags and showed them to friends to the consternation of their teachers.

Occasionally, we found a bat in the most unusual place. The most unusual place was our coffee pot. When a bat found its way into our bedroom, we chased it until we either caught it or it flew into another part of the house. We quickly closed the door and were finally able to go to sleep.

We, friends and a bat removal service were unable to get rid of the bats. And, yes, we had tried every advertised remedy, including prayer. Nothing worked. Last year, the bats miraculously and mysteriously disappeared. The lot next to ours was built on maybe 10 years ago. Unbeknown to us, last year, our bat congregation had opted for another residence, our new next-door neighbor’s house. 

 A few days ago, as I was walking to the mailbox up the street, I noticed a truck in the neighbor’s driveway. On the back of the truck was a sign with the words “BATS AWAY.” The owner of the truck was just getting out of the truck. I walked up to him and introduced myself. I told him that we had a bat problem and he offered to make a free inspection of our home. When he got through, he said, “Your home is too big of a problem. I won’t be able to handle it.”

Then I asked him what he was doing at our neighbor’s house? He said, “I am getting rid of their bats.” I asked, “What do you do with them?” He said, “Nothing, they will probably find another house on the lake to nest in.” And they did. The next day, they were back in our place. It surely looks like this entrepreneur has a steady clientele in Pagosa Springs. He lives out of town, but spends the summer in Pagosa Springs chasing bats. 

 Should there be someone reading this story who has a clue as to what we could do, please don’t hesitate to stop by and let us know. You can’t miss our place if you look for a log cabin home on the west end of Lake Pagosa. There is a big willow tree at the edge of the lake. We enjoy visitors and have tons more stories. 

This column includes both fiction and nonfiction, and views expressed do not necessarily represent those of The SUN. Submissions can be sent to