Even as bat “exterminators” at Pest Pros, we can’t deny it: there are plenty of positives about bats. They devour insects, support cave ecosystems, and pollinate plants, to name just a few benefits of these sky-dwelling creatures. Really, we could sit here and talk about the virtues of bats all day. Despite their inherent scariness, they’re very intriguing animals.
However, bats could be responsible for curing world hunger, and homeowners still don’t want them buzzing around their property. With this in mind, many homeowners wonder how to get rid of bats permanently. Read on as we examine how to get rid of a bat in the house and outside the home.
Signs You Have a Bat Problem On Your Property
While you might be lucky (or unlucky) enough to see bats roaming around your property, it’s not all that commonplace. Remember that bats are nocturnal creatures and live in hidden nooks, making it tough to get a clear visual. So, sometimes, you’ll need to perform your best Sherlock Holmes impression and put in a bit of detective work.
You’ll therefore need to know the main signs of a bat infestation, which include:
- Bat droppings (a.k.a. “guano”) on your walls, ledges, and window sills
- Odor from bat droppings
- Bats flying around your property at night, whether they’re arriving or leaving
- Black stains around entry points
- Chirping and/or rustling noises
Disclaimer: don’t get too concerned if you see a lone bat circling your home — that doesn’t necessarily indicate any infestation. They might live elsewhere and just eat insects in your yard before heading back to a different roosting spot. A strong indication of an infestation is if the sightings are more frequent, combined with the signs listed above.
Bat “Extermination” Isn’t Usually an Option (Nor Should it Be)
Before you do anything to solve your bat problem, you must know your local laws.
Why is it crucial for you to perform due diligence? Because most states protect bats and make it illegal to exterminate them, which isn’t surprising given how vital these creatures are to the environment. In Washington state, for example, all species of bats are classified as protected wildlife and cannot legally be hunted, trapped, or killed.
With that, the suggestions below will focus on how to get rid of bats without killing them. With that in mind, we also suggest installing a decoy bat house in your yard. This way, your unwanted tenant will have somewhere to roost once you’ve gotten rid of them.
Now, we understand if you’d wish to not have any bats around your property at all. But hear us out — there’s a method to the madness. First and foremost, the bats will have a place to stay, meaning they won’t be tempted to keep trying to sneak into your house or onto your porch. Furthermore, they’ll eat insects on your property and be “playing on your team,” so to speak.
Here’s one last point we’ll make before moving forward: you need to act fast at the first sign of a bat pest control problem. Otherwise, you’re leaving your property vulnerable to structural damage and the costly repairs that come with it. If you’ve identified a bat infestation on your property, contact Pest Pros for immediate remediation.
Where Are Bats Commonly Found On Your Property?
As natural habitats continue to get wiped out by urban sprawl, bats more frequently become tenants inside homes as a means of roosting. How are these nifty creatures able to pull off such a feat?
Well, bats are tiny and can slide through holes and gaps under an inch in width. There’s essentially no crack or crevice too small for a bat seeking out roosting sites, which typically include:
- Eaves and soffits
- Chimneys and dormers
- Space beneath broken shingles
- Areas behind gutters
- Your porch
How To Get Rid of a Bat in the House
Here’s a breakdown on how to get rid of a bat in the house (or many bats in the house):
- It’s important to know what type of bat you’re dealing with since each kind has its own maternity season. A mother might get barred from your home, leaving its babies behind, who’ll die (and remember, bats are protected, so this isn’t good, never mind the smell it’ll leave behind). Thus, you shouldn’t take action if a bat is in your home during its specific maternity season.
- You’ll want to figure out where the bat is entering from so you can strategize. Typically, entry points are chimneys and vents, roof ridge caps, etc.
- You can get rid of bats with a one-way exit valve placed at their entry point so they can leave the building without coming back in.
There’s a bit more to this process. But we cover this topic in a more comprehensive guide to getting rid of bats from inside your home.
How to Get Rid of Bats On Porch
A bat can find some of its favorite roosting spots on your porch after they’re finished eating a hearty meal of insects and need a place to rest and digest. Porches draw in bats is due to the nearby lights, which attract mosquitoes and other insects. In short, you’re caught between a rock and a hard place unless you want to be swarmed by mosquitos every time you come outside. Fortunately, we can give you a few tips on how to get rid of bats on porch overhangs:
Wait Until Winter – The first tactic could plainly be waiting for the winter until the bat leaves due to the cold. While some bats are big enough to hibernate INSIDE your home during the winter, your porch won’t offer enough heat.
Mylar Balloon – However, you might not have the patience to wait until winter. You also might not want to chance the bat getting into your home. So, try hanging a helium-filled Mylar balloon near the roosting spot. If the balloons sway or are suspended by aluminum foil, it should repel the bats from your porch. Hanging chimes or mechanical owls can also help if the balloons are too unsightly for your tastes.
Adjust Roosting Surface – Unlike the two above suggestions, this last one is more longer-term as a solution. Specifically, try altering the roosting surface with something like plexiglass to prevent bats from hanging like they can on brick or wood.
Keep in mind that, while these “solutions” can be effective ways of repelling the bats from your porch specifically, it’s common for the bats on your property to take up residence elsewhere instead — possibly even within your home. The only effective way to eradicate a bat infestation is to call in professionals like Pest Pros.
Getting Rid of Bats in Your Roof
One of your best bets, when a bat gets into your roof, is using mothballs since they smell naphthalene, which the nocturnal sky-dwellers do not like.
You’ll have to replace the mothballs frequently if you want them to do their job and get rid of the bats because the odor fades quickly. Also, note that you’ll need to use an abundance of mothballs to generate a sizable enough smell, which will then seep into your living space.
Lastly, bats don’t like bright lights that much, so consider using Christmas decorations to repel them from your roof area as well.
Getting Rid of Bats in Winter
Now, we’ll first point out that bats are most active in the early fall.
All the same, you still might need to concern yourself with getting rid of bats in winter. Specifically, big brown bats are sizeable enough to handle winters inside your home. They’ll find the optimal space to hibernate in your walls and attics, staying cozy and protected from the harsher, frigid elements.
While this might not seem like a huge issue since the bats are supposed to be hibernating and, therefore, sleeping, there’s more to the story. Drastic changes in winter temperatures lead to bats waking up mid-hibernation. They’ll flap around and wreak havoc around your home until they find a more comfortable spot.
Your best bet for preventing bats from roosting for the winter is covering your entry points. Observe where the bat leaves at dusk, then hang clear plastic sheeting or bird netting over those areas.
DIY Isn’t an Option: Call Pest Pros to Get Rid of Bats Permanently
Given the protected status of bats and how crafty these pests are, there comes the point where DIY simply won’t do. You’re limited in how much you can do to free your house of bats by the law, and oftentimes, using hardware-store repellents will only prolonge an actual solution and allow the infestation to grow, making it more difficult for the professionals to control once they’ve been called. For the sake of your own sanity, getting into an epic turf battle with bats isn’t always the best idea.
There comes a time when you need to type “bat removal services near me” into the old Google machine to find a professional to handle the situation. For instance, calling Pest Pros to deal with your bat problem will ensure the pests are removed from your home humanely and permanently.
If you have a bat problem that needs to be dealt with promptly and professionally, contact Pest Pros today.