Bats are small, warm-blooded, mammals with the unique ability to fly. Bats use echolocation to find small insects and can eat up to three times their body weight in insects each night. Bats can roost in caves and cliffs, but most often form colonies in homes and buildings. Once inside, bats enjoy the consistent temperatures offered by walls and attics. Although colonies can vary greatly in size, bats can cause building damage and pose serious health risks.
Bats are most active during the summer. Unlike most wildlife, who breed in the spring, female bats birth their pups in early summer. Young bats rely on their mothers to survive for 6-8 weeks until they are able to fly and catch insects on their own. A mother bat will normally give birth to one pup per year, which is why the population grows at a much slower rate than many other wildlife species. The bat population is essential to controlling insect populations, which is one reason why they are protected in many jurisdictions.
Even though it’s not advised to remove bat colonies during the June and July birthing season, as it can mean locking out mother bats from their babies, it is still an important time to prepare for removals that can take place in August once the babies have grown up. During June and July, our wildlife technicians will prepare homes for bat removals in August by identifying entry points and formulating a removal plan. By August all the babies will be mobile enough for the entire colony to be safely removed by expertly installing one-way doors over their entry and exit points. One-way doors allow the bats to leave the attic and walls to feed on insects but prevent their re-entry upon return.
Bats are nocturnal creatures, and most will emerge from their roosts 2-3 hours after dusk to feed. Their diet consists primarily of flying insects such as mosquitoes, beetles and moths. Insects are also most active at night and in the summer, which explains why bats follow the same schedule. They spend much of the later summer and early fall feeding heavily in preparation for winter hibernation.
Bats roost in dark, cool areas like caves, tree cavities, and low traffic areas of our homes like attics, walls and chimneys. Be sure to check these areas of your home for signs of bats regularly, especially during summertime.
Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control’s Wildlife Technicians are trained to identify bat entry points (they can fit through a hole the size of a dime!), followed by locating the bat colony and determining the phase of the breeding cycle. To ensure a humane and economical removal, within the boundaries of the law, our strategy involves removing the entire bat colony from your home. Our knowledge of bat behaviour and biology ensures that breeding bats do not leave behind their babies, a situation that can increase health concerns and costs.
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Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control’s wildlife removal strategy is humane, safe and reliable. Part of our process involves clearing and cleaning any contaminated material, like droppings or carcasses, that can pose serious health risks. Your Wildlife Technician will advise cleaning and clearing tactics, like insulation repair and attic restoration, depending on the severity of contamination. This will help ensure a safe and healthy future for you and your family.
The next step in Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control’s process after humanely removing and safely cleaning up after wildlife, is ensuring that your home and family are protected. To prevent against future re-entry, your Wildlife Technician will use Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control’s pioneered exclusion sealant to fill even the tiniest gaps and holes leading into your home. For your protection, our Wildlife Technicians will advise you to contact your local Public Health Department, who will determine whether or not to test a bat that has entered your home for rabies, and if those at risk for contact require post-exposure rabies shots.
Although bats provide a very important role in our environment (a single bat can eat up to 3,000 insects, including mosquitoes, in one night), they can also be dangerous if they roost in buildings or come into contact with people. It’s a myth that bats in Canada fly in your hair or suck your blood, but there are many other problems they can cause, leaving many wondering how to get rid of bats.
FACT: Bats can bite you when you’re sleeping or if you attempt to catch them. If inhaled, bat droppings can cause histoplasmosis, which is characterized by flu-like symptoms. The very young, very old and those with impaired immune systems are at greatest risk for severe illness.
FACT: Bats hibernate when temperatures dip below 10°C (e.g. September to April) and young bats may be left to die if a parent is killed. They typically feed on a 24-48 hour cycle – removing the active bats from your house may mean you’re only catching half the colony.
FACT: A bat can fit through a hole the size of a dime. Simply closing holes doesn’t work. Bats will often find another way out (and back in again) and if they die in your house or business, they will cause odour and damage.