How Do I Know if I Have Bats in My Home?
How do I know if I have bats in my home? Have you ever wondered how to tell if your home has become a bat haven? Keep reading, and we’ll go over some of the most common ways you can tell if you have a bat problem. Some of the most common places we find bats are in attics, eaves, and hanging around any other cool place at your home. Of the 1200+ species of bats, we only find a handful of them in the Charlotte area. Bats are nocturnal, although many times, we see them flying around just before sunset or even during the day when the weather is warm enough. Bats are beneficial to our environment, and some species are even protected by legislation. Some species can see very well, while others rely heavily on echolocation (sonar) to navigate their way around.
Bats found in Charlotte and the surrounding areas can typically enter a structure through as little as 3/8″ gaps. Inadvertently, our houses can create some excellent roosting sites. Open gable vents make a great home for bats.
Prior to removing any bats from a home, a thorough inspection should always be performed, including the roof line and soffit connections. When removing bats from a home, the goal should always be to only evict them. Bats should never be trapped or killed as bat populations have declined over the past few years due to various reasons. Inexperienced homeowners and irresponsible wildlife operators can also pose a risk to their well-being. When bat removal is done correctly, all gaps should be identified and sealed. One-way exit devices should be installed at the commonly used entry points. These exit tubes allow the bats to leave, but do not allow for re-entry. Once all bats have been removed, more permanent, long-term repairs should be made.
If bats are so great for the environment, why do I want to remove them?
Bats are beneficial to the environment as a whole, but can be very unhealthy to have hanging around your home. With the presence of bats comes the presence of their feces (guano), other insects and parasites that live on them, and diseases they may be carrying. Histoplasmosis is the most common infectious disease that can be caught by inhaling its spores found in the bat guano that may be lying around in your attic. Rabies is another disease associated fairly commonly in bats, and in 2014, the CDC ranked bats as one of the primary animals to transmit rabies. Bats are best when living in their natural habitat outdoors.
How Do I Know If I Have Bats?
If you’re concerned your home has become a habitat for bats, there are some things you can keep an eye on. Look for discoloration or droppings at one or all of the louvered gable vents. These are prime entry and roosting sites most commonly found on homes. You can also check anywhere else around your home that is notoriously known for having gaps left during construction or places that typically deteriorate due to moisture. If you’re feeling really adventurous, you can look in the attic. Use caution if you take this route, as there may be guano in unsuspected places. During their maternal season (May-July), you may even hear them from inside your home, as they tend to be quite chatty when newborn pups are present.
If you’re concerned about a possible bat problem in your home in the Charlotte area, give us a call at 704.888.0911. Our Wildlife Agent will thoroughly asses your needs and put together a plan for removal, clean up, and long-term solutions to guarantee against future re-entry into your home.