Fall foliage is a sight to behold as temps grow cooler and kids return to school. Bat sightings will proliferate likely instilling a modicum of fear to all who are near. Do not fret just yet. Bats’ history is largely a mystery as they have been widely misunderstood. A single little brown bat can catch 1,200 mosquito-sized insects in an hour, and that’s really cool!
A big brown bat is a farmer’s best friend, during the warmer months, consuming some of America’s most significant crop pests like leaf hoppers, stink bugs, cucumber beetles, June and Bark beetles, corn earworm moths, cutworm and armyworm moths, ants, termites, roaches, crickets and assassin bugs. Bats are also pollinators.
However for all their good work, no one wants a bat problem in their home.
Bats Moving Indoors
The little winged mammalian insect-devouring predator also seeks warmer, indoor, environs in order to survive the colder winter season. This typically involves bats finding openings as minuscule as one half inch in diameter. Bats typically roost in attics, chimneys, under siding, eaves, behind window shutters, louvers, and soffits.
Bats gain entry into homes through open windows and garages, broken or ill-fitting screens, missing or loose shingles, where pipes, tubes and wiring enter buildings, areas where flashing has loosened and where ever cracks and crevices are found. Sports stadiums and parking garages are also quite attractive to bats.
Signs Of Their Presence
Their presence can be identified by brown or black stains from body oils or droppings around cracks or crevices formed by ill-fitting building materials. Bat droppings may also be seen on walls, under decks and porches and on floors beneath dilapidated ceilings.
Their droppings are dark. Though their droppings may resemble small hard rodent pellets, bat droppings are easily crushed as they are soft, revealing shiny insect parts. If you come in contact with a bat, avoid directly handling it. They will typically bite and can transmit diseases.
Deadly Diseases That Bats Spread
Lyssaviruses have been discovered on every inhabited continent. This group of viruses causes rabies, in addition to other diseases that can be fatal to humans. While current rabies vaccines are effective against many of the viruses in this group, several of the Lyssaviruses identified in Africa and Asia primarily associated with bats cannot be prevented with current rabies vaccines.
Some of these diseases such as rabies, histoplasmosis are commonly found in bats worldwide. When enjoying the great outdoors this fall season, avoid hikes into caves where bats roost. Their bites as well as their droppings spread harmful diseases. Don’t go bats this migrating season; instead turn to your local Ehrlich office for peace of mind.
Bats Tips: what you can do
- Avoid direct handling of bats. They are not typically aggressive but will bite if handled.
- If handling a bat is unavoidable, contact Ehrlich for a free home inspection. Do not attempt to handle the bat yourself.
- Replace old or ill-fitting screens and shingles. Bats only need an opening as small as one half inch in diameter to gain entry into your home.
- Stuff steel or copper wire mesh around pipes entering your home. This will prevent entry as well.
For more information, on how to get rid of bats in your home, click here!
Do you have any bat infestation experiences? Share below in the comments!