This is no way to start a new year.
Working here in this little back room yesterday I kept getting a whiff of something bad. It was faint at first and I kept trying to figure out where it was coming from, but it wasn't until bedtime that I finally localized it to the furnace vent. Just the one vent, which seemed odd.
There was nothing I could do about it in the dark last night. Eeeuw. No way I'd go down in my basement alone, the only light my little bicycle headlamp.
It had better be a rat.
When I woke up this morning I could smell the dead-thing from my bedroom and the smell is much stronger in this back room now. Perhaps it's died up inside my big furnace and I won't even be able to reach it.
While I drink my morning coffee I'm working out a strategy: I'll wear old sweats, a mask, rubber gloves; take some tongs, and a newspaper to wrap it up quickly and a heavy plastic bag to seal it up in. There's an old can of RAID in the basement, maybe I'll spray the body first and maybe that'll keep its tropical rat mites on its body so they won't get to me.
I'll let you know how it works out.
Later: No smell in the basement. No dead rat to dispose of. This is bad news: it's either inside the furnace ducts or my wall, neither of which is reachable. We get to stink until it mummifies, better get used to it.
I've sealed off the furnace vents to this wall and the stench in my house is nearly gone. The vents in my bedroom/living room have no odor. I'm fairly sure now that the corpse is in the wall, not the furnace. I'll just leave the furnace off and use the electric heater for the duration. I wonder how long it will take to mummify. At least it should keep the ants busy, shouldn't it?