What Attracts Bats and How to Prevent Them from Getting in Your Home
Once bats move into a house it can be next to impossible to relocate them. By knowing what attracts bats in the first place will help you in preventing them from getting in.
What Attract Bats to My Home?
Bats are more common in older homes where they tend to visit dusty attics and unused sheds. There are usually multiple entry points in old houses to giving bats the opportunity to enter through spaces like chimneys, cracks in the siding, soffits, loose screening, and separate flashing.
Don’t think that just because bats are relatively large that they need large spaces to make their way inside. Bats only need a small crack, less than ⅜ of an inch in some cases. They can squeeze through holes that are smaller than the size of a quarter.
If you think you might have a bat problem, keep an eye on your home. Identify cracks or holes, and in summer evenings, watch those spots for bat activity.
Make sure you keep an eye on each side of your home because bats can have more than one entry point.
You might also notice other signs of bat occupation around your home. For example, the entry points may be surrounded by greasy brown marks. These marks are usually a mixture of urine, body oils, and feces.
Are Bats Bad?
Bats are important for a healthy ecosystem. These creatures help keep insect populations down, with a single bat eating up to 3,000 insects a night. Bats also help perform crucial roles as pollinators. Bat droppings is a highly fertile soil additive that farmers all over the world covet.
That being said, some species of bats have begun to roost indoors instead of caves or dense treetops as a result of a loss of their habitat. Some people have a few bats in their attics and may never know the difference. But more and more people are discovering large colonies of bats living in their homes. These can create noise, odor, and health issues.
How to Prevent Bats from Entering Your Home
Luckily, most bats are not dangerous. Less than one percent of all bats have rabies. However, you should still keep them away from your home. A good way to do this is to set up a bat house. When you displace bats from your home, you need to provide a viable alternative for them to live in. Building a bat box can allow you to provide cozy living quarters for them.
These houses look like large birdhouses. This will allow you to enjoy the benefits of having bats on your property to chow down on insects without having to worry about them in your home.
What Do I Do After the Bats Have Left?
First and foremost, you must clean. Bats have a keen sense of smell and will attempt to return to any prior roosting spot. The smell can be what attracts bats back to your home. Remove all droppings, but make sure you wear proper protective gear while doing so.
Bat droppings can contain dangerous fungal spores that can make you incredibly sick.
You may also need to tear apart any worn interior walls, and other areas that could have been infested with bats. Cover all openings to your home with netting or tubes, so that the bats can leave but not crawl back in.
Don’t plan to evict bats in any season besides late summer or early spring as female bats give birth to pups in mid-May, and this can cause abandonment of bat pups inside your home. Make sure you seal all windows, doors, cracks, crevices, open soffits, and other openings to prevent bats from coming back in.
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