There are approximately 900 species of bats world-wide! Bats are not classified as rodents, they are mammals. They are the only mammals that take to the sky! Bats are nocturnal critters, and most us echolocation to navigate and catch insects.
Due to the fact that most bats eat insects, Bats hold a federal protection they are very beneficial to the ecosystem and should not, under any circumstance, be touched, injured, or killed.
How, When and Why They Become a Nuisance Pest
Both the Little Brown and Big Brown bats live in colonies. In Maryland and Delaware, these colonies are commonly found in the attic of homes and other buildings where openings in roofs, eaves, gables, chimneys and vents are found. For bats to gain access to buildings they need only a hole 5/8″ or greater. When buildings have a large quantity of bats living in them, guano, or bat dropping accumulation is typically the problem, not the bats themselves.
Damage They Cause
As mentioned above bats are not the problem, unless they find their way into living quarters, then you may be in a rabies exposure situation and bat control and rabies prevention measures may need to be taken.
Bat guano (droppings) accumulation is the main problem. Bat guano can produce a rancid ammonia smell as it decomposes. The odor can often be detected throughout the building the bats inhabit.
Bat guano provides a breeding ground for microorganisms such as Histoplasmosis. Bat guano accumulation may also cause sheet rock to rot and collapse. Along with the disease and odors associated with bat colonies, come certain insects such as Bat Bugs (closely related to the Bed bug), fleas, ticks, mites and cockroaches.
After thorough inspection of your entire roofline, All potential entry points will be sealed and devices will be installed to safely allow bats to exit. Once all bats are removed and the building is “bat-proofed” their guano must also be removed. The area should then be fumigated to kill all microorganisms and any parasites these colonies may produce.
Bats are creatures of habit and “bat-proofing” a structure is very detailed; if the proper steps are not taken to remove and exclude bats from a structure the problem may not be resolved. These bats may return the following year.