One of the most important matters when it comes to home pest control is “How To Get Rid Of Bats”
Here’s your comprehensive guide on how to get rid of bats. But before we get to the specifics we first need to address a few of the myths and truths about bats, so you know when they’re really a problem and when you should be glad they’re around.
Which of the following statements is true?
1-Bats are scary, dirty, blood-sucking, rabies-infested, dangerous birds that should be nowhere around our homes or property.
2-Bats are meek, harmless birds that are beneficial to our ecosystem and should be left alone.
Of course, neither statement is correct. Each contains at least a bit of truth, but #2 is much closer to the mark – with one big caveat: if bats have set up shop in your house, they should definitely not be left alone.
The Truth About Bats
Of course, we’re sure you already know that bats aren’t birds, they’re flying mammals.
Now, let’s get all of the negative stereotypes out of the way. Are bats scary? Sure, to some people – but clowns are scary to some people, too. Dirty? Somewhat, but bats are more meticulous about their personal hygiene and grooming than most animals. Only South American vampire bats “drink” blood; they take it from sleeping animals on a small scale, sort of like a mosquito taking human blood in the backyard. Only a tiny percentage of bats carry rabies, and in America there have only been 40 known cases of human rabies caused by bats in the last 40 years. Are they dangerous? Not really, but they can cause problems.
Now, let’s address all of the “bats are our friends” stories you may have seen. Bats are indeed meek (unless directly threatened or infected with rabies) and they’re definitely beneficial to our environment. They’re often beneficial to our comfort, too. Nectar-eating bats pollinate flowers, fruit bats spread seeds in the forest, bat manure is one of the best types you can use in a garden – and bats eat insects. They gobble up all manner of pests that feed on crops, saving farmers billions of dollars a year on pest control.
Perhaps the best thing you can say about bats is that they love mosquitoes. Just one bat can eat as many as 1,000 mosquitoes per hour. Give that some thought the next time you’re busy swatting at your arms, legs and face on a beautiful summer evening.
That doesn’t mean you should just get over your fears, shrug your shoulders and send a “welcome to the neighborhood” card if you discover bats in your home. As we’ve said, bats can definitely cause problems. Bats in the attic will, naturally, mean bat urine and bat droppings in the attic. Bat guano often carries a fungus which can carry the infectious disease called Histoplasmosis; if you inhale the spores, you can develop serious lung problems. And over time, the urine and droppings can slowly destroy wood and other construction materials, creating structural issues for a house.
So if bats have taken up residence on your property, you may want to encourage them to stay. If a colony has decided to move indoors, though, you need to take action. Here’s how to get rid of bats.
An Important Warning about Getting Rid of Bats
This is very important to know before you start: in most states and many countries bats are a protected species and it is illegal to kill them. so If You think the answer for the Question How To Get Rid Of Bats is by killing them, You could face big fines or even a jail sentence. Further, most poisons don’t work against bats; chemical bombs may drive them out of your attic, through your walls, and into the living areas of your house; and dead bats will rot, causing major odor and health issues. Don’t try to kill bats.
Thankfully, there are ways on How To Get Rid Of Bats which are humane, effective, and won’t put you at risk. Read on.
How to Get Rid of a Bat
If you only have a single bat in your house, it’s important to let it find its way back out before other members of its colony join it. The good news is that even if you’re afraid of the bat, it’s more afraid of you. There’s nothing it wants more than to find a way out of your house. If you panic, that will only make things worse.
Here are a few different ways to approach a single bat which has paid you an unwelcome visit. Before you try any of them, put on leather gloves, long sleeves and long pants just to make sure you don’t get bitten.
In all of these cases, be gentle; bats are very fragile and handling them roughly will break their bones. And if any of these methods seem beyond the limits of your courage, call a pest control company or your local animal control officials to come get the bat for you.
Once the bat is gone, try to find any holes it might have used to get into the house (remember, bats can fit through dime-sized spaces) and plug them up permanently.
How to Get Rid of Bats When You Have a Colony
A colony of bats can present create health and safety problems when it roosts inside a home. Many people’s first impulse is to quickly plug any holes the bats may have used to enter their house – but that’s the worst thing to do because it seals the bats inside; instead of leaving the attic to find food outdoors, they’re likely to climb down through the walls and start flying around the rest of the house.
When you discover a colony of bats, take a deep breath, and look at the calendar.
Why a calendar? Bats that enter a home are almost always females searching for a safe place to have their pups. Trying to get rid of bats during their maternity season will be counterproductive, and in many areas it’s illegal. After their babies are born mother bats go outside at night to find food, leaving the pups behind because they’re too small to fly on their own. If the mothers are prevented from re-entering the house, the babies will die, smell up your home and provide an open invitation to disease-carrying parasites and insects. That’s why you absolutely should not try to get rid of the colony until the pups are old enough to fly in and out of the house on their own.
Maternity seasons vary by species of bat and geographical area. You’ll have to search online for details about your area, or contact state or local agricultural experts, to find out when it’s safe to get rid of your bats. Generally speaking, though, maternity season runs from May through August.
Once you’re certain the season is right, it’s time to take action to gradually exclude the bats from your home.
How to Get Rid of Bats Using the Exclusion Method
The exclusion method on How To Get Rid Of Bats is time-tested and effective. However, it does take some patience.
The first step is to discover your inner James Bond or Jason Bourne, and go on a spy mission to gather intelligence. Set up outside your home at dawn or dusk and watch for bats entering (at dawn) or leaving (at dusk) the house, so you’ll know where their entrance/exit points are. You may need to enlist other members of the family so you’ve got all sides of the building under surveillance.
Now that you know where your problem areas are, it’s finally time to start getting rid of those bats. Head to your local home or garden center and buy some one-way bat doors. These ingenious devices are known by a number of different names, including exclusion doors, one-way bat tubes, one-way bat doors, one-way exit valves and one-way bat netting, but they’re all basically the same thing. They let bats fly out, but use the creatures’ senses against them to stop them from flying back in.
In a nutshell, bats navigate by senses other than their sight (yes, they’re as “blind as a bat”, so when they return to the house they’ll follow smells or air flows to find the same opening they used to leave. That’s how the exclusion method is able to trick them. A one-way bat door places a vertical tube or chute, made from screening or other material, over those openings. When the bat leaves, it’s forced to fly down the tube to reach clear sky. When it comes back, the opening that it returns to is blocked by the screen, and it’s not able to see that the only way back in is to fly up the tube. Eventually, it gives up and just goes away. The same process can be used if the bats are nesting in a chimney.
The exclusion process takes between three days and a week, since not all bats will leave the attic every day. Once all of the bats are gone, use caulk, wood, screens with fine mesh or other appropriate material to seal up every possible entry point, including small gaps in siding, chimney flashing and foundations. Then put on full protective gear, including long sleeves, gloves and a respirator, and clean up the mess the bats left behind using an enzyme cleaner. Or call in professionals to do it, if you don’t have the equipment or stomach for the job.
By the way, if you’re the do-it-yourself type, you can save money by making your own one-way bat doors.
How to Get Rid of Bats on Your Property
If your “problem bats” are roosting outdoors on your property, do you really want to get rid of them? Remember, they may be the most effective mosquito control system you can find. If you’re determined to evict them, though, here are some suggestions on how to get rid of bats outdoors.
-Sound and Light: Ultrasonic frequency generators will sometimes drive bats and other pests away. You can try a regular sound machine as well, although that will be much less effective. Another possibility is setting up very bright lights, which often repel bats and force them to find another area in which to settle.
Sticky Tape and Fans: If there are specific problem areas where bats land regularly, like a porch or carport, line them with
-sticky tape or set up fans blowing right at the areas. You may not force the bats to leave your property completely, but that should stop them from landing on those structures.
-Chemical Repellent and Mothballs: You can purchase chemicals with names like Bat Repellent and Bat Scat and scatter them, or mothballs, around the property. These aren’t 100% effective, their effect wears off after a few weeks, and they can be dangerous if you have pets or small children, but they might be worth a try.
-Clean up the Area: Bats will abandon an area that doesn’t have food (insects) or water available. Try to get rid of all insects and standing water in the vicinity, as well as dead trees where bats may nest.
Set Up a Bat House: You may not be able to get rid of bats which insist on staying on your land, but you can at least determine where they’ll stay by setting up a bat house far away from your house or other frequently-used areas. That has the added benefit of keeping them nearby to eat mosquitoes, and it’s also the humane approach.
Final Cautions and Advice on How To Get Rid Of Bats
We’ve strongly suggested wearing gloves and other protective clothing whenever dealing with bats, but in the unusual event that you are ever bitten by a bat you should wash the area thoroughly and immediately seek medical advice; if the bat has been captured or trapped (or has died) it should be saved for rabies testing. Just to reiterate: it’s extraordinarily rare for a bat to be rabid.
If you find at any time that you’re uncomfortable dealing with a bat problem, don’t hesitate to call in professionals. Exterminators deal with these issues on a regular basis, and definitely know how to get rid of bats for you – even if they have to wait for the end of maternity season.