Bird in bathroom. Should not be there. How to fix?
September 11, 2016 3:49 AM   Subscribe

There is a bird. Some type of finch. It flew into my washroom via the open louvered vent adjacent to the shower.

Fortunately, my husband, on a nocturnal journey to the loo, noticed said intruder before our cats were able to make the discovery. There is currently a quarantine in place, but it can't last indefinitely as the litter box is located in the washroom.

Resources on hand: the typical accoutrements of two not-particularly-handy men living in an average Chicago two-flat

Thinga already attempted:
--shooing bird toward window: did not work
--standing still and hoping bird flies into outstretched palm: did not work
--smearing peanut butter on edge of louver in hopes the bird will go to it and then fly out: in progress
--mocking husband's high-pitched yelping: completed

We don't have a mesh laundry bag and I don't think we have anything that could be pressed into service as a net substitute -- but I may not be thinking creatively enough.

Other potentially relevant data:
Bird fear status: elevated

Cat interest statuses: cat 1 -- as yet unaware; cat 2 -- highly interested

Local time: quarter to six in the morning
posted by tivalasvegas to Pets & Animals (11 answers total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: We used to get birds coming in through the chimney at my house all the time. Wrap your hands in a towel and grab it, this might take a few tries. Take it outside, it'll flee pretty quickly.
posted by Trifling at 3:54 AM on September 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: update: I clapped at it until I was able to maneuver it out the vent. Mission accomplished.
posted by tivalasvegas at 3:59 AM on September 11, 2016 [23 favorites]

In case this happens again: the easiest way is generally to make the open window (or vent) the only source of light.
posted by Too-Ticky at 4:03 AM on September 11, 2016 [4 favorites]

Response by poster: I imagine that if this happens again, the cats will probably make that option bloodily irrelevant.
posted by tivalasvegas at 4:08 AM on September 11, 2016 [3 favorites]

After calling the raptor trust for advice about a Coopers hawk in our porch, we threw a heavy towel over him and put him outside, he flew away unharmed.
posted by mermayd at 4:57 AM on September 11, 2016 [2 favorites]

I have nothing to add about your bird predicament, which I'm glad you were able to resolve; however, this may be the most charmingly written ask I've seen in a long time. :-)
posted by joycehealy at 5:34 AM on September 11, 2016 [33 favorites]

We need a "must include video" rule for posts like these.
posted by donnagirl at 6:24 AM on September 11, 2016 [6 favorites]

Birds are fairly reactive to bird calls played from YouTube. So a predator call played outside the bathroom might work in these scenarios to make the bird really want to leave.
posted by jacquilynne at 6:53 AM on September 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: There was an actual predator lurking just on the other side of the door, in fact; however he was not making noises. I will try that if it happens again, though.

Thanks for the compliment on the writing style. I blame it mostly on the honing that's happened since I started participating heavily in the elections thread. Partial credit also goes to William Zinsser, whose book On Writing Well is a national treasure: I was re-reading it yesterday purely for the pleasure of its prose.
posted by tivalasvegas at 7:48 AM on September 11, 2016 [3 favorites]

This could have been the highlight of your cats' lives. Missed opportunity, and I have informed the local humane society of your negligence as a cat owner.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 9:32 AM on September 11, 2016 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: They get just as much pleasure stalking the hell out of houseflies, gnats and other potential terrorist intruders.

The local place where we got our kittens is a horrible rat's nest of officious and poorly trained staff (and I say this as someone who deals with Illinois governmental bureaucracy on a daily basis). I'm surprised they didn't require me to purchase life insurance on the damn creatures.

I welcome their hatred.
posted by tivalasvegas at 7:23 PM on September 11, 2016 [2 favorites]

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