Bat found and removed from Rugby Hall


Milla Ben-Ezra/Chronicle

On the ceiling of Rugby Hall, a bat lays still. The student who initially noticed bat assumed it to be a decoration, but the bat was later removed by maintenance staff.

Davis Marks and Tate Sheehy

Students discovered a live bat on the ceiling of the Rugby Hall lobby during morning break Wednesday, drawing crowds of students and faculty.

Ellie Whang ’24 said she saw the bat after walking down Rugby Tower and walking towards the commotion. She said she thought the bat was not real.

“I laughed because I thought [the bat] was fake,” Whang said. “I thought it was a piece of tissue paper on the ceiling.”

Technical Director and Performing Arts Teacher Aaron Martin was informed of the bat’s presence when a student pointed it out and asked him if it was real or not. Martin then notified Upper School Plant Manager Dave Mintz ’87, who along with a member of the Maintenance Staff Brian Bissel, arrived to handle the situation. Bissel used a ladder, bucket and clipboard to transfer the bat from the ceiling to a nearby tree outdoors while a crowd of students and faculty watched.

Martin said while he loves animals and has seen them indoors in the past, bats pose a threat because of rabies and other disease they carry and require quick removal.

“I’ve seen lizards, crickets, birds and rats in Rugby before,” Martin said. “My reaction [to seeing an animal] is always excitement. I love animals and nature, but I worried a bat on the ceiling, while cute, was likely a perceived threat of rabies and biting so it had to go.”

English Teacher Jocelyn Medawar did not see the bat in Rugby Hall, but saw it outside after it was transferred there.

“I saw [the bat] outside on the tree,” Medawar said. “It was pretty beautiful, actually, but I would not have thought that if I’d seen it inside.”