How to bat-proof your home

Why Bat Proof Your Home?

Bats are a common nuisance and health hazard in homes throughout the entire world. Bats are commonly found in attics and can carry and spread various viruses including the rabies virus, the Hendra and Marburg viruses, and histoplasmosis. In fact, on average any bat will host an astounding 1.8 zoonotic viruses. Under no circumstances can you let bats live in your house: for the safety of yourself, your household, and your community.

Why Do Bats Carry So Many Viruses?

Bats prefer to live in close, dank spaces that are full of bacteria. This provides the pathogens with the ideal conditions to circumnavigate a bat colony. It’s widely believed that bats don’t get sick because they’ve evolved to create an immunity to many viruses. This is achieved through hot internal temperatures of 104 ℉ (40 ℃ ), a strong immune system, and a dampened antiviral immune pathway in some species.

Can You Tell If Bats Are Carrying A Virus?

No, generally you cannot tell when a bat is carrying a virus, outside of a laboratory setting.

How Do I Bat Proof My Home?

First, you’ll want to ensure that there aren’t any bats or other animals living in your home: pay special attention to your attic and basement. Bats are often found in attics while other pests, such as rats and mice, prefer basements. Bats and other pests will hide in these dark, damp areas because they’re similar to caves and they’re not disturbed.

Bat proofing and bat removals should never be done between May and July, especially if you’ve confirmed that bats are currently living in your house. This is because during these months pups are birthed. These pups are limited to staying in their roost until they learn to fly. Because bat removal is generally an exclusion-based removal, during these months the pups will get stuck in their roost (likely your attic) and will probably die, vastly increasing the likelihood of spreading various viruses to your household. Additionally, the bat parents will be frequently trying to get back in your house to get their pups, creating a whole other issue. The best seasons to bat-proof your house are spring before the bats begin roosting or during the fall, after you’re certain that no bats or pups are remaining in your house. Due to these complications when it comes to bat removal, it is best to visit batremoval.org to find professional help.

If you’ve confirmed that there aren’t any bats or other pests in your house, carefully examine your home for holes, noting holes as small as 1 x 0.5 inches, which might allow a colony of bats to enter your house’s perimeter. Ensure that all of these holes get covered. There might be holes on your roof, under your porch, or in the crevices of your house. You might consider covering them with window screens, chimney caps, wood, steel wool (for areas with wires), and door guards. The material used will depend upon the size and location of the hole.

If you have bats or other pests living in your house, the easiest course of action is to call a wildlife specialist to remove these bats or other pests. These wildlife specialists will also bat-proof your house, making your job all the easier. Wildlife specialists generally use exclusion to get the bats out of your house. They’ll make sure that all of the bat colony’s entry and exit points are sealed, and then proceed to put a one-way door on the last remaining entry and exit point. The bats will eventually leave, in search of food or water, and then not be able to return to their nest. Eventually, their colony will follow and the bats will be out of your house. If there are a few stragglers left behind, the wildlife services company will generally return to your house to remove any remaining bats or pups.

Is Your Attic A Health Hazard? Do You Need It Decontaminated?

Many wildlife control companies also offer attic and basement decontamination services. Leaving bats’ droppings in your attic can quickly lead to a disease called histoplasmosis and a wretched smell, so be sure to decontaminate your attic as soon as possible. Leaving your attic untended will also attract various other pests like cockroaches and rats: creating a whole new health hazard.