Nothing sends a chill down homeowners’ spines quite like discovering bats have taken up residence in their home’s attic or eaves. While bats play important roles in ecosystems, having them roosting in human living spaces poses risks to health and home integrity. Safely extracting bats and excluding them from re-entering requires strategic processes best left to trained professionals. This guide provides an overview of humane bat removal, signs of infestation, exclusion methods, clean-up, and tips for preventing future colonies from settling inside your house.
Signs of Bats Roosting in Your Home
Sneaky bats utilize any dark, secluded spaces they can access. Watch for these common signs of bats on your property:
- Droppings – Granular guano pellets found in attics, walls, and entry points
- Sounds – High-pitched squeaking chatter, especially at dawn and dusk
- Musky odor – Bat urine and guano gives off a distinct, acrid smell
- Rub marks – Smudges around openings from oils in bat fur
- Visual sightings – Viewing bats exiting at dusk or roosting in daylight
- Empty roosts – Vacant spots with guano droppings left after migration
Any combination of these clues indicates it’s time to call for bat extraction and exclusion specialists before colonies grow larger. The sooner, the better.
Dangers of DIY Bat Removal
When bats encroach in living areas, homeowners’ first instinct may be taking removal into their own hands. But this is never advisable or effective. Hazards of DIY bat removal include:
- Exposure to guano and bat bites risking rabies or histoplasmosis infections
- Bats scattering deeper into home if spooked, making removal much harder
- Orphaned young being abandoned inside structure when mothers are chased off
- Potential contact with protected bat species, which is illegal
- Lack of proper knowledge and equipment to securely seal entry points from re-entry
- Further damage from bats frantically trying to regain indoor roost access
- Costly repairs needed from amateur exclusion attempts gone wrong
Bat removal is best left to trained professionals with vaccines, protective gear, approved deterrents, and expertise performing strategic extractions and exclusions.
Professional Bat Removal Process
Reputable wildlife control companies follow strict protocols:
Inspection – Identify species roosting, entry and exit points, and scope of infestation through attic/roof inspection and surveys.
Installation of One-Way Exits – Place tube or valve devices that let bats leave but not re-enter primary entry points.
Monitoring and Removal – Watch exits at dusk to confirm bats leaving but not returning. Remove any stragglers.
Sealing – Once removal is confirmed, permanently seal shut all holes and gaps with weatherproof materials.
Guano Cleanup – Decontaminate attic and areas with droppings using disinfectant chemicals and fans.
Prevention – Install timed deterrent lights/sounds, netting, and anti-roosting spikes if needed to keep bats away long-term.
This strategic funneling down and sealing process causes minimal stress to bats while effectively clearing and exclusion-proofing your home.
Why Exclusion is Better Than Catch-and-Release
Well-meaning homeowners may hope to humanely trap bats and release them outdoors. But this is illegal and ineffective:
- Bats often die regardless when relocated due to shock.
- Catch-and-release does nothing to block re-entry, resulting in recurrent issues.
- Opening the structure repeatedly to release more bats actually teaches them entry points.
- There are health hazards and legal restrictions on bat handling.
- Nursing mothers may have dependent young left behind to starve.
The only permanent, legal solution is professionally sealing exit points to passively evict bats until roosts are vacant. Once a structure is impenetrable, colonies will move on and not return.
Cleanup and Guano Removal
Once removal is complete, contaminated areas require special cleanup:
- Remove all guano droppings and materials like insulation using plastic suits, respirators, and disinfectant.
- Ventilate attics and voids with fans to dry areas and kill viruses.
- Apply Boracare or other microbial sprays formulated to neutralize bacteria left from guano.
- Hydroblast and deodorize ceilings, rafters, and walls stained by guano if needed.
- Safely discard all waste following hazardous material disposal regulations.
Proper guano removal eliminates public health risks for homeowners after bats have been expelled.
Preventing Future Bat Invasions
While sealing is the first line of defense, also make homes less bat-friendly:
- Install quarter-inch screening over openings like roof vents, chimneys, and attic edges.
- Caulk, seal, and weatherstrip gaps around windows, siding, roof flashing, and doors.
- Keep attic doors/hatches tightly closed and insulated.
- Trim back tree branches overhanging the roof or home exterior.
- Only contract eave-protection repairs during winter when vacant.
- Apply non-toxic repellents around common entry areas.
With some diligence, homeowners can bat-proof properties and avoid repeat infestations following professional removal. Don’t share your living space with these winged mammals. Call bat exterminator Meyerland experts to safely evict bats and fly free from infestation worries.
Bats roosting inside attics, walls, and other voids can create noise, mess, damage, and health issues for homeowners. But well-meaning DIY removal attempts are dangerous and ineffective. The safest, most reliable solution is hiring professional bat exclusion specialists trained in strategic removals and permanently sealing entry points. With their expertise, homeowners can rest easy knowing bats won’t re-enter.