Getting Rid of Bats
Bats often have a bad reputation for carrying rabies and being aggressive animals, but in fact, neither are true. A very small percentage of bats carry rabies, and they are not known to attack humans unless provoked.
They also serve a critical economic function as insect feeders. Still, no one really wants to come home and find one flitting about their ceiling.
And, they can indeed become quite pesky if they set up a home in your building. Their droppings and urine are the most toxic thing about them, while the incessant squeaking is easily the most annoying.
The truth is that there aren’t any chemical solutions or pesticides that are designed for bats, but like with most things, defense is the best offense. Preventing a bat colony is easy enough if you know what to look for.
Bats usually look for indoor roosting places during the early days of Spring and are usually females preparing for their June and July babies.
Look around and inspect your home for any entry points or structural defects. The most common place is at the roofline. An opening as small as ⅜ of an inch is enough for a bat to fit through.
If you already suspect a bat may be roosting, look for droppings around the area and see if you notice a particular odor emanating from the site.
Observe the site at dusk and watch for them to find the exact entry points. Bats will leave every night to go hunting unless it is particularly rainy or unseasonably cold.
If you spot one around early to mid Fall, is is a good idea to make sure there isn’t a nest of young inside before sealing the gaps.
If this is the case, the best thing to do is to install a bug light, or several, around the house and the area to remove their food source. The mamas will move the nest to greener pastures eventually, and then you can seal the openings without risking any dead bats rotting in your roof.
Seal the gaps at night while the bats are away with wire mesh, steel wool, or wood in order to keep them out. While you’re up there, make sure to check around the entire roof. Better to be safe than sorry.
If bats are proving to be a recurring problem in your area, it could be worth your while to install a Bat house to give them somewhere to go while they provide their essential function to the community. They are quite efficient at controlling mosquitos and other flying insects. It may take them a while to accept the bat houses are for them, but once they do – they’ll be some of the best neighbors you ever had!