Are you worried bats have invaded your attic? Bats can be frightening. While often viewed as cute, they can also be dangerous, carrying a wide range of diseases. They can produce high pitched screeches that provoke your dogs to bark for hours. You may hear them stirring at night, resulting in sleepless nights. Whatever is driving you crazy about a bat infestation, one this is for sure, most homeowners want to know bat removal solutions.
You’ve probably landed on this page looking for more information about bats and some bat removal tips. In this article, we will go over crucial points, including common species of bats found in attics, where they usually live, signs of a bat infestation, and lastly, the methods for removing bats from the attic. So let’s get started and gain a better understanding of bats, why they choose our attics, and what we can do to remove them from your home safely.
Common Bat Species Found in Attics
Bats come in a variety of colors and sizes. Though they are typically on the smaller side. If you have had the unfortunate experience of being face to face with a bat, you would comment that the fear they create versus the size of their bodies is somewhat disproportionate.
You may be surprised to learn that there are over 1,200 different species of bats found around the world. However, the U.S. has roughly only 40 different species. This makes bats the 2nd largest group of mammals on the planet, losing the number one spot to rodents. Bats are classified as winged-mammals and are one of the most exciting mammals found today, given they can fly and look similar to rodents.
While bats might seem frightening, they do have a special place in our ecosystem. They eat their body weight in mosquitos. If that isn’t an excellent reason to make sure they are protected, we don’t know what is, as mosquitos are certainly known for being the most annoying insect on the planet.
When it comes to species and identifying characteristics, sometimes it can be hard, as a homeowner to distinguish. But we will go over the top five most common species you may see in your home.
A Little Brown Bat Love Attics (Myotis lucifugus)
This little creature features mouse-ears and belongs to the micro-bat family. It has a smaller body that has a signature glossy brown fur covering most of its body, excluding the wings and ears. While it shares a similar name with the Big Brown Bat, they are not from the same genus. The little brown bat can commonly be found in attics, but their natural habitat is dark covered places like tree hollows and woodpiles. Like most of the bat species, little brown bats are nocturnal, active more at night and resting during the day. Little brown bats enjoy insects while being able to live up to 6.5 years.
Most concerns about coming in contact with little brown bats are that they carry diseases, the most dangerous being rabies. However, the little brown bat has been placed on the endangered species list, along with many other bats due to declining numbers. White-noise disease has been slowly destroying the population of little brown bats. It is vital to seek professional removal for these as to protect their species from dying out.
The Mexican Free-Tailed Bat is Often Found in Attics (Tadarida brasiliensis)
Known for being one of the largest groups of mammals in America, the Mexican Free-Tailed Bat holds the fastest horizontal speed record. It is estimated that their average ground speed can reach up to 160 km/h.
This medium-sized bat is predominantly brown with black wings, with a soft furry body. While they are classified as medium, the Mexican Free-Tailed bat will only reach 9 cm in length, weighing in at a mere 9-12 grams.
Mexican Free-Tailed Bats often roost in large numbers and prefer being a group versus alone. However, this makes their species very vulnerable to threats and has contributed to their declining number. Here in California, there is concern that the most well known and most common bat species appears to be dying out.
Mouse-eared Bats Reside in Attics Too (Myotis)
Another typical bat to California is the mouse-eared bat. These are another micro-bat variety or Vespertilionidae. The mouse-eared bat is on the larger side for a vesper bat, with ears typically longer than they are full. They also have bigger feet. Mouse-eared bats eat insects, and with their larger feet and claws can pick up small fish out of the water.
Mouse-eared bats like to be in darker places, much like other varieties, and will often call attics and barns home. They like being around a good food source, making anywhere that has a healthy supply of insects a place of vulnerability to this species.
The Big Brown Bats Have a Love for Attics (Eptesicus fuscus)
There are over 25 different sub-species of the common house bat that could be entering your home. House bats all have the same typical exterior appearance and can often be difficult to differentiate for the everyday person. One of the most recognized in California is the Big Brown Bat.
Big brown bats feast on insects and can consume copious amounts of flying insects and beetles. These are a type of vesper bat and are rather large compared to other bats like the Mexican Free-Tailed bat. This type of bat can weigh up to 26 grams, making it much larger than microbats.
Big brown bats are commonly found in caves, and places that are cooler, with a good selection of insects to keep them satisfied. These bats are often remarked as a cute variety of bats featuring fluffy darker brown fur, black wings, and pointy ears.
California myotis are most commonly found in attics(Myotis californicus)
Possibly the most common bat found in California, given the name, The California myotis is relatively small and often confused with other myotis types. The average California myotis weighs roughly 3.3 grams and only reaches up to 94mm in length. They feature pale, dull fur, medium-sized pointed ears, and keeled calcar.
One of their distinguishing characteristics is a slightly lighter face and shorter tail. The California myotis, when not calling your attic home, will like to roost in dead trees. This is an excellent place for the bat to find insects, and seek shelter from predators as they rest during the day. They prefer forested areas and are very seldom found in busy urban areas.
Where Do Bats Live?
Bats can be found all over the world. One of the biggest misconceptions is that bats only live in caves. It’s hard not to think of Batman. Living in a huge underground cave might be where most people have developed the idea that bats prefer caves. Contrary to popular belief that caves are where bats call home, they can actually be found in a variety of locations.
Bats will choose dead trees for their home for a variety of reasons. One of the primary reasons being proximity to a food source. Insects also love to inhabit dead trees, termites being a good example. This makes it much easier for the bats to find food without too much effort. Those types of bats that prefer solitude over roosting with a huge group will often choose this for their home.
Some bats indeed prefer caves as their home of choice. There are certain types like a big brown bat, that like caves because of their colder climate. This allows them darker places to sleep during the day and more protection against predators.
Another place you wouldn’t think to find bats are in rock crevices. These crevices would need to be big enough that the bat can squeeze in, but they often like the more confined area. These can be excellent hiding places as well as places to call home as they are not easily accessible to most other mammals, reptiles, or any other species looking to do the bat harm.
How do bats get in the attic?
Now that you know a little bit about bats in the area, and where they like to hide out naturally, how do these mammals get into the attic? That is an excellent question, and one many homeowners have asked. Bats, because of their smaller size and flexible bodies, can fit into tiny spaces. Usually, bats will find cracks and crevices in building material on the roofing line. Most bats can squeeze into sizes as little as a dime.
Reasons why bats go to the attic?
There are a couple of reasons why bats would choose your attic as their new home. Whether it be for protection against predators or the fact attics are a dark cooler sanctuary, it is unclear the exact reason. Bats will also call attics of abandoned properties home too. Bats will choose attics because:
– Away from predators
– Dark and cool
– Insects are often found here
– Easy access
Signs of Bat in the Attic
Are you curious if bats are a problem for you? If you haven’t yet seen a bat, how do you know if your attic has an infestation of bats or something else? It can be challenging to determine whether or not its bats are the problem but take a look at a few of the most common signs of bats.
Probably the most prevalent sign is seeing bat droppings on the attic floor and the attic walls. Similar to mouse feces, homeowners often confuse the two. Black, tiny droppings will often be scattered all over the area.
While the human ears don’t hear some of the bat’s sounds, sometimes they are. You may hear a high pitched screeching or chirping. These will happen more often at night when the bats are active. If you notice, the sounds will be coming from above, not below, as some bats like to inhabit basements.
A Presence of Black/Brown Stains
At the entry and exit points of the attic, you’ll see black or brown stains left behind from the bats. Bats have grease on their fur that transfers to the walls and building material as they squeeze in and out. You may see these stains on walls or even on the roof.
Bat Removal from the Attic
There are several reasons why you may be looking for bat removal tips. Fear of diseases, disrupting your sleep, or the possible property damage they can inflict is just to name a few. If you are ready to get rid of bats, you should be aware that tackling the issue on your own could be dangerous. Bats are known to be disease carriers, making them more challenging to confront. Bats can also be very good at hiding, and defensive if they feel threatened.
Bats can’t be killed by poison. Because their primary food source is mostly insects, bait systems won’t work. It is also illegal to poison bats. Instead, it is advised to close off any entry and exit points, allowing them to get into the attic. The best way to capture these pests is to contact your professional pest control, like Bug Guys Pest Control. We handle bats humanely, making sure the property is bat-free. At this point, the property can be sealed off, and no more bats can inhabit the area.
Other Areas You May Find Bats at Home
Though bats will prefer the attic, they will call almost any area home if it is secluded and dark. Other areas where you might find bats roosting include the basement and closets. If you have areas that you don’t often use, it is a good idea to check these locations for possible infestations.
Hopefully, you’ve gained a good understanding of bats, where they live, and how you should go about getting rid of an infestation. We highly recommend that if you are dealing with a bat infestation that you contact the professionals for assistance. Bats can carry diseases, making them dangerous to approach. To prevent another bat problem after removal, you must look for areas they can enter the home and seal it off. Any weak points in the roofline or a chimney could be a potential opening. If you are unsure where the bats entered the home, give Bug Guys Pest Control a call.