Recently, a customer said that they had a bat problem. The customer is in Melbourne, FL. He said in the eave of his home, where there was already some chicken wire installed to keep animals from nesting, a family of bats decided to move in. They took advantage of the tiniest of space between the chicken wire and the wall and set up shop.
He said that during the day it just looks like a clump of dirt has accumulated behind the wire. But, using a pair of binoculars he was able to see an adult bat and several small bats. This brings us to our conundrum. Bats are beneficial is several ways but they also cause problems for home owners.
Bats will spend all night eating thousand of mosquitoes. They are basically a filter for the air. This means less bugs to bite you and your family. As they fly, the also drop their waste on your yard. Bat excrement (guano) is an extremely good fertilizer. The problem our man in Melbourne is facing is that the bats also leave bats dropping all around their new home. They leave it all over his driveway. They leave it all over the side of the house. Its not ideal, to say the least.
Bats can carry disease, like rabies for instance. It can be transmitted through fecal matter. So, you can see why removing the bats is a good idea. Here is the problem.
You cannot disturb or relocate bats from April-August in Florida. This is their reproduction period. The State of Florida spends a lot of money fighting mosquitoes. I guess their thinking is that bats do that work for free, so they should be protected.
Once the season is over you can pay a professional to remove your bats. If you like having them around but don’t want them in your home, you can actually set up a bat box in your yard. The box is comprised of two pieces of wood with a thin space between them. The bats will hopefully discover the space you provided them and move in.
Bats really have no interest in you in any way. They are not trying to bite you. They simply want access to the area around your home so they can feed all night long. If you listen on a quiet night you can hear the little pops of very high-pitched sound that they use to find their way around at night. They use those sounds as part of a very advanced natural sonar system. It is quite amazing.
See all species of Florida bats
image courtesy of ky.gov
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