Why Do Bats Come into Houses?

Why Do Bats Come into Houses?

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Why Do Bats Come into Houses? Having a bat colony in your house does not mean you asked for it. You probably didn’t do anything to invite them into the house, but bats will still come into the house. Bats come into houses for the simplest reason, safety. Instead of living constantly exposed to weather and predators, they can conveniently find a way to come into a house. Would you rather live in a hollow tree or an attic? Sure, an attic is not really our ideal living space, but it is far better than a tree outside. The bats think the same way, and that is why bats come into houses.

Bats come into your house simply because it is a nice home to be in. It is temperature-controlled, has a dark and safe place to sleep, and because there are spaces the bats can get in.  No one asks for a bat colony to move into their home. If a bat can find an area to enter your home for shelter, it will take advantage of the opportunity. Bats need food, water, and shelter to survive just like us. Instead of living in a chilly cave they prefer a safe, heated house. Usually, a bat colony is only noticed when a lone bat loses its way and finds itself flying loose in living quarters.

Bats in the Summer

Has a bat ever come into your house during the summer? Having a bat flying in the house can be a sign there is a bat colony living in the structure. Bats are colonial animals and when there is one, there are generally more. Bats come into our houses for a few different reasons. The main reason bats like to come into houses is safety. In the summer, bats that are living in the structure will search for the coolest area in the home. Since bats are so active in the summer, they are constantly moving during the night and sometimes during the day. Luckily in the summer, most people have the air conditioning on in their houses. Bats will be searching or a cooler area in the house.

As the bat is searching for a cool area to rest, it can find its way into living quarters. Typically, the bat will search and fly to the room with the air conditioner. Another reason a bat will come into living quarters is in search of water. Some people have been shocked to find a bat dead in their toilet. As the bat swoops down to get a drink of the toilet water, the bat gets trapped in the bowl and unfortunately dies. Bats prefer cool, damp areas to rest in. It is not uncommon to find bats in your basement during the summer. Even in finished basements, usually, the utility room area is unfinished which allows bats to enter from the walls. Bats come into houses in the summer for the shelter, cool air, and quiet. But, where do bats go in the winter?

Bats in the Winter

During the winter, the bats come into houses for a different reason. Bats actually hibernate through the winter, just like bears do! Except bats are much smaller so they need somewhere a little warmer to roost, our houses. Bats will roost in colonies because the body heat keeps them warm. Because the bats hibernate during the winter, they will need to find a structure to roost in. Bats will begin fattening up for winter and looking for a winter roost in late September into October. The bats will hibernate in the structure from October until March or April. During those months, the bat will not be entering and leaving the structure.

There is nothing that can be done to get rid of the bats during the winter. They must stay in the structure until Spring because they are federally protected. The bats may wake up in the winter and move about in the walls of the home. Fluctuating weather or harsh cold will cause the bats to wake up during hibernation. Hibernation is weather dependent. When the cold weather leaves and the warm weather moves in the bats will begin waking up. The temperature will need to be warm enough for the bats to come out to drink and feed.  So that bump in the wall you hear at night may just be a bat looking for its way back up and out, but how do you confirm bats have come into your house?

Do I have Bats or Mice?

People tend to confuse bat infestations for other pests. When someone goes into their attic to inspect, they may see some droppings. Right away, the most common thought is mice. People think they are finding mouse droppings or hearing mice in the walls at night. Bats and mice are very similar sounding in the walls with the squeaky, screechy sounds and the scratching. After suspecting mice in the attic, the next step is mouse traps. Sticky mouse traps are great inventions, but sometimes they catch more than just mice. We get many phone calls from people finding a bat stuck to the mousetrap. That is one for sure and easy way to confirm bat activity in a house!

Bats infestations can be difficult to diagnose because they hide in the attic. Once the bats enter the home and gain access into the attic, the bats will burrow behind the insulation. Once they are behind the insulation, they can use the internal wall cavity to travel throughout the house. If you’ve ever had a bat in the basement, that is most likely how the bat got down to that level. Bats are primarily active at night. Listen for any high pitch screeching sounds or scratching in the walls if you suspect a bat infestation. The next step after confirming that bats have come into the house is to call professional bat removal experts.

Conclusion

Bats come into houses for shelter, protection, and heat. Seasonal weather changes also cause bats to come into houses. Bats choose to come into houses for shelter because of how well built they are. Houses provide the most protection from predators while also providing a dark quiet place to rest. Bats moving into the house is much easier than getting rid of the bats. The bats will not willingly leave the roost. If it is safe and the bats are comfortable, they will need to be safely removed. If you have a bat colony living in your house, or even suspect a colony, call professionals to assess the situation.  Bat removal work is seasonal, just like the bats. In the winter, the bats cannot be removed from the structure.

Unfortunately, the homeowner will have to live with bats until the Spring when hibernation ends. It does not matter if you house is brand new or older. If there is any area a bat can fit through and come into the house, the bat will squeeze through and move on in.  In the wild, bats live in places like caves or hollow trees. While they can survive in those settings, finding shelter like a human house is ideal. Would you rather sleep in a cave or an attic? The choice is simple for bats, the attic isn’t too bad of a place to stay. Bats are messy guests to have and can cause a great extent of damage. Do not think you have to live with bats, call professionals who can get rid of the bats safely and back into the environment.

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