What I'm Seeing Now

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... Where You Can Check Out, But You Can Never Leave ...

Pulling into the driveway I could not help but notice that the neighborhood looked like a Hitchcock movie scene.  There were crows everywhere!  On the roofs, in the trees, walking around in the yards and road.

And not a few!  Well over 100!  They were even flying above in dozens.

From the subject house my client, the Realtor and I looked out a window and saw black things stuck on the siding of the house next door.  We were about 30 yards away, and from that distance they looked like, and we suspected, bats.

And from our window we could also see the gable vent.

Plastic, it was all chewed up.  I said that this makes that house vulnerable to opportunistic animals, birds and bats.

I joked about maybe even to the crows in the neighborhood!

But it didn't look right.  Bats like hidden and protected areas.  These looked stuck on the house at a joined angle in the siding.  So I went to look further.

And this is what I saw!

Five crow heads sticking out of the siding!

And quite dead.

Freaky.

Apparently the crows had gotten into the attic through the gable vent.

Making their way around as they explored the attic space they were unable to get out.

At this spot, from the inside, they must have seen a ray of light from a gap in the siding.

Trying to take advantage of the gap they stuck out their heads, only to not be able to pull them back inside.

Stuck in place, they died.  I had to wonder how many others were dead inside the attic space!

It was the Hotel California ... where you can check out, but you can never leave.

My recommendation:  small things can become big things.  Home maintenance is quite that - maintenance!  The gable vent is easy to see and replace.  I prefer to see the aluminum ones over the plastic ones.  Aluminum doesn't get so brittle from sunlight, isn't so vulnerable to hail storms, and isn't so easily broken by animals.  An animal-free attic space is a happier attic space!

 

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 52 commentsJay Markanich • November 23 2013 02:37AM

Comments

OMG that is really freaky.  Yes, I would hate to see that attic.  Yuck.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) almost 5 years ago

I'm going to bet that these people have no idea what's in the attic Cousin!  Yucko...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

I bet you'll never see that one again.  It is one for the history books for sure. 

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty AR LLC) almost 5 years ago

Ewwwww,...If Alfred were here now..he might hire you for adding more realism to his films...and the Homeowner never noticed...hmmm ?

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) almost 5 years ago

Wow, talk about scary - glad it's not my home!

 

Thanks for sharing

Posted by Jennifer Mackay, Your Bay County Florida Realtor 850.774.6582 (Counts Real Estate Group, Inc.) almost 5 years ago

Good morning Jay,

I hope you gave them a "heads" up.

Make yourself a great day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) almost 5 years ago

Well it looks as if the owners are on their way to "4 and 20 blackbirds baked in a pie."

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) almost 5 years ago

Jay, did you go over next door to alert them of the problem? That is really weird.

Posted by Michael Setunsky, Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA almost 5 years ago

Great, now we have something else to write up "Siding/soffit/fascia improperly installed and may present a safety hazard to birds."

Posted by Joshua Frederick, Home Inspector in Defiance & all of Northwest Ohio (Home Inspector for ASPEC Residential Services, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Cue Joe Walsh guitar solo. Tippy Hedron would be so scared to live here. Great picture, can I use it?  

Posted by Scott Seaton Jr. Bourbonnais Kankakee IL Home Inspector, The Home Inspector With a Heart! (SLS Home Inspections-Bradley Bourbonnais Kankakee Manteno) almost 5 years ago

Oh Jay, this is creepier than my post and the weird fur we found in a house inspection this week...I am totally creeped out by your find.

Posted by Ginny Gorman, Homes for Sale in North Kingstown RI and beyond (RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate) almost 5 years ago

The bird picture is priceless, what did the buyers say?

Cindy,

LOL, 4 & 20 blackbirds. Your a lil twisted, I like that!

Posted by Paul Miner (Affinity Inspection Group "For The Discerning Client") almost 5 years ago
Jay, Now that's definitely one we have never seen before. So happy to have a continuous ridge vent!
Posted by Bill and MaryAnn Wagner, Jersey Shore and South Jersey Real Estate (Wagner Real Estate Group) almost 5 years ago

Too bad for those birds but really? Was the homeowner alive or was this an inheritance home or foreclosure to be like that?

Posted by David Shamansky, Creative, Aggressive & 560 FICO - OK, Colorado Mtg (US Mortgages - David Shamansky) almost 5 years ago

Holy guacamole! That is pretty strange... looks like stuffed heads in a big game hunters family room...lol!

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) almost 5 years ago

Jay,

That's about the most freaky thing I've ever seen in a house. 

Rich

Posted by Richard Iarossi, Crofton MD Real Estate, Annapolis MD Real Estate (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) almost 5 years ago

Jay, you may have a winner of freaky here---glad I am not the one that is going to have to "disappear" them.

Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) almost 5 years ago

So what tradespeople did you call to remedy this situation Jay. This is a very unique problem that is creepy to see in photos.

Posted by Tom Arstingstall, General Contractor, Dry Rot, Water Damage Sacramento, El Dorado County - (916) 765-5366, General Contractor, Dry Rot and Water Damage (Dry Rot and Water Damage www.tromlerconstruction.com Mobile - 916-765-5366) almost 5 years ago

An award is due here...Exceptional post and point made for special category. If this goes viral, remember your friends...

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) almost 5 years ago

Jay - This one is definitely at the top of the "Icky" factor!  I have run into some odd things in attics before, but nothing like this.

Posted by AJ Heidmann ~ CRS, YOUR Alexandria & Arlington, VA Real Estate Expert (McEnearney Associates, Inc.) almost 5 years ago

Great title and an even better reminder to take care of the little thingds before they become big problems. "Such a lovely place, such a lovely place."

Posted by Jeff Fritzson: Frisco Real Estate Pro, Your Success is My Focus! (Jeff Fritzson Real Estate, Ebby Halliday Realtors) almost 5 years ago

Hi Jay,

That's a crazy scene. And where are the pictures from the attic? That's crazy. I would love to have those pics for the book.

Have a great day in Bristow my friend.

Best, Clint McKie

Posted by Clint Mckie, Desert Sun Home, Comm. Inspection 1-575-706-5586 (Desert Sun Home, commercial Inspections) almost 5 years ago

Not a big fan of crows but that is a very sad sight. In Oklahoma our problem is squirrels and the cost of removal is not small.

Posted by Joe Pryor, REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties (The Virtual Real Estate Team) almost 5 years ago

Jay, did you look around to see if Tippi Hedron was on site.

 

Posted by Jack Gilleland (Home Inspection and Investor Services, Clayton) almost 5 years ago

OHHHH my Word that is scary ohhhh so scary Ohhh so sad for the birds and they did not hear them up there crying out for help Ohhh sad so sad

Posted by Laura Filip, What can we do for you today? (Laura Filip Broker , Opening doors for All Seasons of Life ) almost 5 years ago

OK, Jay, that is creepy. I don't think I've ever seen anything quite like it. I bet the neighborhood kids have a ball making up scary stories about that house.

Posted by Mike Cooper, Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Sales Pro (Cornerstone Business Group Inc) almost 5 years ago

Jay, Although I am not a fan of crows. That sight makes me sad just thinking of their struggle for life.

Posted by Helen and Larry Prier- Re-Max Gateway - Residential Real Estate, Anacortes & surrounding Skagit & Island Counties (RE-MAX Gateway- Residential Real Estate Sales) almost 5 years ago

What do you tell the buyer if it is the house next door, or even on both sides.  WOW

Posted by Dwight Puntigan, Dwight Puntigan (DRP Realty, LLC) almost 5 years ago

That is bizarre. Hitchcock is right and for the slightly superstitious buyer it might be enough to scare them away and never come bacl.

Posted by Aaron Hofmann, aka Mr. Smyrna Vinings (Atlanta Communities) almost 5 years ago

Jay-creepy, freaky and sad all at the same time. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) almost 5 years ago

Oh, that is so creepy.  Those poor birds, getting stuck like that.  Wonder if they had a little conversation, "Gee, Charlie, I think we screwed up sneaking through that vent."  

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com) almost 5 years ago

I believe you have found the creepiest house attic in America...Yuck!

Posted by Les & Sarah Oswald, Broker, Realtor and Investor (Realty One Group) almost 5 years ago

Jay...

Oh wow, that is really creepy. And a little sad too. I wish the animals has come to a better fate.

Posted by Richard Weisser, Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional (Richard Weisser Realty) almost 5 years ago

YIKES! The Count counts the bats! Vun, two... lol. Ah, ah, ah!

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) almost 5 years ago

Probably not James.  It reminded me of the South American Jíbaro tribe which shrinks heads and puts them all around their village.

Apparently not S&D!  Pretty gross if you ask me.

Jennifer - I bet it wards off ghosts!

Raymond - I was tempted to knock on their door, but decided to head out of town...

I was in Great Falls and laughed when I read this Cindy!  That would be a BIG pie!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

As I said to Raymond, Mike, I decided to head out of town instead.

Joshua - I have seen people put rat traps on wood sided houses to get rid of woodpeckers.  This works great!  Inside out!

Sure Scott.  Instead of the three monkeys (see, hear and speak no evil) you have the five crows.  Let's see what you come up with!

Fur Ginny?  I find fur all the time, often in the yard.  It's like Thanksgiving leftovers, but different...

My buyer thought it was pretty awful.  And as you Cindy, well, you have no idea!

Just kidding, she's a sweetie.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Bill - I like the ridge vent too!  Not much of this going on when that is working...

Nope, they live there David, and are best friends with the people selling the house I was inspecting!

Fred - never heard of crow guacamole, but let me know how it comes out.  It reminded me of that too, along with my comment to James in #3 above.

It was pretty awful Richard.  I thought it was bats, until I got up close then ... wow!

I think that would be an inside job Charlie... pretty gucky.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Can you imagine the phone call Tom?  "Hi, do you get rid of crows stuck through my siding.  Yes, they're dead.  Yes, I mean stuck.  Well, you just have to see it for yourself...  Why don't you, um, head over?"

Richie - I imagine there might be a virus or two associated with those dead crows!

AJ - attics can be fun!  I was very interested in what was going on up there, but the people weren't home and I didn't want to wait around.  So I HEADED out of town and went home.

Jeff - they stabbed the siding with their steely, steely beaks but could not kill the beast.

Clint - I didn't wait around for the people to get home - this was the house next door to my inspection.  See what I said to AJ above.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Joe - we had squirrels in our attic many years ago.  I had to trap them.  I let them go at the Manassas Battlefield under a big oak tree.  They lived happily ever after.

Hey, Jack!  How you been boy?  She was in a phone booth up the street.  Don't know why...

Laura - that was a long, slow end.  That was the stairway, um, siding to heaven.

Mike - it's a big boo haha.  I was creeped out myself.  As I HEADED home I thought it would make a great post.

H&L - it is a very unfortunate, but informative, photo.

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Dwight - as soon as I saw what it was (not bats) I called the buyer over to have a look!

Aaron - he thought it was pretty icky, but hoped they would be gone by the time he moved in!  If they are still there he will never NOT look pulling into his driveway.  I know, double negative.

Kathy - it is, is and is.  I thought about it as I HEADED home afterward.

Kat - more than likely.  But stabbing the siding with their steely, steely beaks, they could not kill the beast.

You think S&L?  Do I get an award?  Lollipop?  4 and 20 black birds baked in a pie?

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Our fate is our fate Richard.  They made their attic and lied in it.

Yes, Laura, but they were facing south - is that good?

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

I have found more than a few dead birds in an attic, but that one is weird. They look to have been caught in there recently. 

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) almost 5 years ago

They surely aren't dessicated or shrunken yet Jim.  Maybe recent who knows?  The neighborhood is eerily full of crows!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

This picture is enough to deter new agents.

Posted by Allison Bernard, Real Estate & Relocation Services 401-533-6916 (Keller Williams Central Rhode Island) almost 5 years ago

It might be Allison!  I don't know who's noticed this little collection!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

I has goose bumps while reading this post! How awful!

Posted by Sharon Parisi, Dallas Homes (United Real Estate Dallas ) almost 5 years ago

Sharon - you and Tippi Hedron!  You sure they weren't crow bumps?

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Well I suppose that was worthwhile to see if only as a cautionary tale.

Posted by Michelle Carr-Crowe Just Call 408-252-8900 Top 1%!, Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years (Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty) almost 5 years ago

Michelle - home maintenance is always cautionary!  This could have been prevented.  For all I know the other gable vent was in worse condition!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

GOOD MORNING JAY ... creepy, sad and I don't know...weird.  Did you leave them there?

Posted by Gabrielle Kamahele Rhind, Broker/Owner (KGC Properties LLC, Tucson Property Management & Real Estate) almost 5 years ago

It was the house next door Gabrielle.  I had no choice!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Just a quick drive by to wish you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving

Posted by Ed Silva, Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally (RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 ) almost 5 years ago

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