You never put up a For Rent sign, but you’ve got tenants — and they’re not of the human kind. They’re bats — beady-eyed, winged, and fuzzy. Bats are not your first choice of houseguest, but many homeowners and renters find themselves in the same predicament. Colonies of bats prefer quiet, cave-like spaces to roost, reproduce, and raise their young. They don’t like the cold, and your attic is nice and warm. They’re nocturnal, so they live their lives in darkness, making your attic a prime piece of real estate for bats.
You probably don’t relish the idea of climbing up into your attic with a flashlight to search for things that go flap in the night. Thankfully, you don’t have to, because bats do leave some clues. Here are a few signs to look out for when checking for bats:
In large numbers, bats can raise up a racket when coming and going. Odds are, though, that it’s not the screech of the bat colony that you’ll hear first. Because the pitch of a bat’s chirp is higher than the human ear can detect, what you’ll likely hear first are the sounds of flapping bat wings or the scratching of their wings on the roof and walls of your attic. If you do hear the sounds of bat echolocation (the way bats create and use sound to make sense of their surroundings), it will be softer than you might imagine.
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Guano, also known as bat poop, is dark brown or black, dry in consistency, and oval in shape. The look is similar to a grain of rice or a mouse dropping. Unlike rodent poop, you will not find guano randomly spread but instead in a concentrated heap. Guano piles are usually near the attic’s point of entry, in clumps down the attic walls near the entry and exit points, and on the attic floor. If you locate guano on a window sill or the ground, look up. The bat’s entry point is likely right above the pile of droppings. Guano has a strong odor, and besides that, it can cause secondary issues such as mold, fungus, and bug infestation. It’s important to get guano cleaned up to prevent further damage.
Bat skin secretes an oil that rubs off on the walls of your attic, leaving a tell-tale sign that you have unwanted guests. Check for dark brown stains around your roofline, dormers, vents, and roof trim. Bats can squeeze into tiny cracks, so if you see brown staining around even the smallest crevice, odds are it is the entry point a colony of bats has claimed as their key to free rental space.
If you’re up for a show and don’t mind sitting outside in the dark for awhile, grab a few friends or family members and position yourselves around the house at dusk or dawn. Bats will make their (not so) dramatic exit for food and flight when the sun goes down. If you’re outside at the right time, you’ll witness their departure or return. If you’re lucky, you can even pinpoint the place they are exiting and entering.
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There are many how-to remedies out there if you’re a DIYer looking to oust your attic of bats. Some of the common try-it-yourself methods you’ll find on the internet are:
Bats tend to find a roosting spot and stick with it, especially while raising their young. So some of these remedies, such as moth balls, chemicals, ultrasonic sound, and rapidly blinking lights, simply won’t be enough to convince the bats to leave their safe and comfortable nesting space.
Sealing off the attic may work if you can pinpoint the exact place(s) the bats are coming and going, but if you don’t do it right, the tenacious creatures will weasel their way back in or find a new point of entry. Another thing to consider is the fact that if you seal the exits, you might potentially trap baby bats inside.
Trapping bats can be dangerous, and it is illegal without a permit in most states. There are many bat species in the United States that are endangered, and messing with endangered species can come with hefty fines or worse. Your best bet for safe, effective, and legal removal of bat colonies is to call a professional.
The cost of bat removal can vary widely depending on many factors. The price may be higher or lower depending on your location, the size of the bat colony, the number of points of entry, and the size of the home. Before deciding on an exterminator, look for a professional bat-removal company that offers free on-site consultations and estimates, in addition to having all the right permits for the job.
The significant risk of having bats in your home is the safety of your family. While most bats are totally peaceful and harmless, they can carry viruses and diseases such as histoplasmosis, a condition that is contagious to humans. If you know you have a bat infestation, or even if you are suspicious, call in the experts. At the very least, get some professional advice.
Also Read : What size is a typical bat colony?
Are you tired of rooming with unwanted bats? With five locations across South Dakota, North Dakota, and Iowa, the experts at Central Plains Bat Removal are well-versed in safe and effective bat removal techniques. With over ten years of experience in bat extermination, the team is professional, dependable, and ready to assist you. Call us to schedule a free first appointment. One of our skilled specialists will show up at your door to provide you with a personalized consultation and price quote, at no charge to you. Let us help you take control of your home.
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