Bats have gotten a bad reputation from movies and urban legends for attacking humans and drinking their blood. In reality, people are not the food of choice for bats. However, not all bats are alike—there are hundreds of species of bats, and they feed on a wide variety of things.
For example, some types of bats eat plants and plant parts like pollen, seeds, nectar and fruit. These bats typically like bananas, figs and mangoes the most. As the bats move from plant to plant, they often help distribute seeds and pollinate plants along their path. These plant-eating bats may also target other sweet things, such as the sugary water used in hummingbird feeders.
There are also some bat species that eat meat and drink blood. While bats don’t typically attack humans, some kinds of bats will eat other kinds of animals, such as lizards, fish, birds, frogs and other bats. Additionally, a few types of bats found in South and Central America feed on blood, although they mainly drink deer, sheep, cattle and horse blood.
Although homeowners don’t want these creatures on their property, bats benefit our ecosystem by eating mosquitoes and other insects. Yet, of all the different kinds of food out in the world, the diet that most bats prefer is insects. These insectivores prefer to feast on bugs like mosquitoes, wasps, flies, beetles, gnats and moths. Many people are surprised to find out just how much bats can eat. Some kinds of insect-eating bats can even devour as many as 500 bugs in an hour. They usually go hunting around dusk and use echolocation which involves a high-frequency sound to find their insect prey.
This means that if you think you are dealing with a bat problem, then it is possible that you might actually be dealing with an insect issue. Since most bats eat insects, having bats show up on your property could mean that you have an overabundance of insects. If you control the insects on your property, there’s a good chance that the bats will leave as well.
Why Do Bats Come to Our Homes?
Besides wanting to feed on the insects on your property, bats also may choose to live on your property because they are looking for a home. Bats usually live in dark and cool natural shelters, such as in the hollows of trees or in caves. Some kinds of bats also like to live in man-made areas like buildings and under bridges. Finally, there are some bat species that will move into your home if they cannot find an available natural shelter.
This is why it is best to have these creatures removed by a professional. A trusted bat control specialist can determine what kind of bats you have on your property, figure out any features on your property that they’re attracted to and help take care of all your bat and pest control needs.
How Long Do Bats Live?
As the only mammal that flies on its own, bats are fascinating creatures. Most bat species live for about 10 to 12 years, but some types of bats can live to be over 30 years old. These flying mammals mate in the fall, hibernate during the winter and form nursery colonies full of bat mothers and babies in the spring. Dozens or even hundreds of female bats and babies can live together in these nursery colonies. Male bats roost separately during this time—either by themselves or in small groups.
While not all types of bats are protected, it is difficult to figure out what kind of bats you have on your property without the help of a rodent and wildlife control expert. That is why it is best to contact a professional for bat control instead of trying to handle it on your own. These professionals know the laws surrounding bat control and have the training and experience needed to safely remove these animals from your home. They can also help you prevent pest problems in the future.
How to Get Rid of Bats
A single bat might get into your home when they are lost or confused. Most often, this happens with baby bats around mid to late summer, when the pups are first learning to fly and find their way around the neighborhood. If this happens, the bat will typically leave on its own once it figures out how to get out of the house. To encourage the bat to leave, you can leave your exterior doors and windows open, turn off any ceiling fans and wait quietly until it exits.
The most effective way to deal with bats is to contact a professional. A specialist can ensure the bats are removed legally and can give you tips on how to avoid bat problems in the future. Since many kinds of bats are protected by federal and state laws, it is critical to hire a trusted rodent and wildlife control specialist. These professionals have the experience and training to determine what kind of bat you are dealing with and help you understand your options for removal.
ABC Can Remove Unwanted Wildlife From Your Property
While bats can eat mosquitoes, having bats on your property can be very nerve-wracking. Between their size, the diseases they carry and the laws that protect them, do-it-yourself bat control is no easy task. When you contact ABC Home & Commercial Services, we will send a specialist to your property who will be able to evict the pests on your property. Then, they will put measures in place to prevent them from coming back. We can even implement a broader pest control strategy to make your property less appealing to all types of unwanted pests in your home and yard. With ABC’s help, you can have peace of mind that you aren’t sharing your home with bats or exposing your family to any risks that come with finding bats in your attic, chimney or crawlspace.