Are there bats and bat babies in my attic?

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It’s always quite nice to see wildlife flying around and hanging out in your back garden, but if you knew that they weren’t just limited to the confines of your back garden, you might think about the situation a little differently. Seeing bats or other wild animals on your property is usually a pretty good sign that there is an infestation of that animal nearby. If you continually see bats in the yard or garden, there’s a good chance that the roost is close; perhaps even in your home.

When you do see them, nine times out of ten it’ll be female bats that you see. These are more likely to come together in groups for maternity roosts during the spring and summer, and it also means that it won’t just be the adults on their own that you’ll need to contend with – you will also need to do a fair bit of work to make sure that all the youngsters are removed as well. Sadly, this is not an easy process, with a whole bunch of laws and regulations that must be taken into account. Disregarding these laws could see you faced with fines or even prison time, especially when you start getting into the realms of endangered or threatened species.

Bats that are seen flying around during the spring and summer are almost always female bats, with young bats in a roost. It might not mean that the colony lives in YOUR attic, but it does mean that they live close by. You can easily see whether or not they hare roosting on your property by watching them at dusk and dawn, or just after. This is the time they will leave the roost to find food, although, it must be noted that not all bats will leave in the same night to find food, and not all of them will leave at the same time either. This is something that definitely needs to be considered when using exclusion devices or other eviction methods. You would need to “stagger” your approach – using the devices over the most-used entrance points, sealing off the rest, and then removing the devices one by one, after a period of about a week, to ensure that you aren’t leaving a bat behind. Bats that you do leave behind will more than likely die. Go back to the Bat Removal page, or learn about bats in the attic with my Bats in the Attic guide.

Customer question: Hi I've had bats in chimney and off to the sides in an area on either side of the fireplace where there are heatalators. I've lived here 3 yrs and have not burned a fire yet. I have noticed the bats for two years. We had bats in the house 5 or 6 times for the past 2 yrs but last August was the worst when we had 9 baby bats sneak thru the vents of the heatalators over a 3 day period. I covered my fireplace and heatalators w/ cardboard and duct tape and it looked awful for 3 months. Then I hired a guy to install screening over the vents and that has held. They emit a smell that is really starting to bother me and the make so much noise from about 10 pm on. What can I do. I am on a limited income and can't afford to hire an expert and I'm not in good physical shape to work on this myself. My son moved away last Sept. and now it is just myself and the cat....and we are both going batty. I worry they will eat through the screening! Help please in MD.

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