Bats

There are more than 980 species of bats worldwide with about 40 species found in the United States. The two most common species that enter structures are the little brown bat and the big brown bat.

For centuriesPhoto of a small bat with its fangs showing, bats have been the subject of folklore and myths, often associated with witchcraft, haunted houses and evil. These myths still exist today and cause unfounded fear in many people.

 

 

Bats are nocturnal flying mammals that leave their roosts at dusk to feed and return to secluded dark places just before daylight. Most species are active during the warmer months and hibernate and/or migrate for the winter season. However, they do not fly in rainy or unseasonably cold weather.

Habits

Big brown bats:

Female big brown bats form nursery colonies in the spring and are joined by males in late summer.  They leave their roost at dusk in a slow, fluttering flight to find food. They feed close to the ground on various insects including beetles, ants, wasps, flies and mosquitoes.bat

Little brown bats:

The little brown bat is the most common specie we have in this part of the country. This specie forms nursery colonies in early spring, then migrates south in autumn and hibernates in irregular clusters from September through April. They feed on insects, primarily flies and moths, and alternate their feeding with rest periods during which time they hang to digest their food.

Habitat

Different bat species living across the United Stated roost in dark secluded areas of buildings and in naturally protected areas like caves.

Big brown bats:

This species commonly roosts in attics and church belfries, and behind shutters and loose boards.  During the winter months, colonies travel short distances seeking hollow trees, rock crevices, drainage pipes, caves, mines and buildings to hibernate alone or in small groups.

Little brown bats:

This species roosts in tree cavities and crevices during the warmer months and seeks shelter in caves and mines to hibernate.

Threats

Bats can pose a serious health threat to humans if they are found inside a structure. Fungi that harbors in bat droppings can cause the lung disease, histoplasmosis. An accumulation of droppings should be professionally decontaminated and removed.

A small percentage of bats are also infected with rabies, but may not show symptoms. Rabies can be transmitted when saliva or even the body tissue of an infected animal comes into contact with another animal or human. Therefore, it is important to seek medical attention if you’ve had any unprotected, physical contact with a bat.

In addition, if an infestation develops, it is important to treat the area for bat mites and bat bugs, which will bite humans.

If you think you might have a bat problem, contact American Pest Management for a FREE evaluation!

 

 

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