CHARLOTTE, N.C. — If you suspect bats may be living in your home, officials with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission ask that you relocate them responsibly before bat roosting season begins May 1st.
Officials say finding bat scat, called guano, is the most obvious indication that bats may be living in and around your home.
If they are getting inside, officials say a licensed Wildlife Control Agent can safely remove them for you before pup rearing season begins.
Click here to find a list of licensed professionals to remove bats.
“Eviction methods rely on a bat’s ability to fly out of the roost, then measures are taken to prevent reentry. Young bats are initially flightless and are totally dependent on their mothers, so when adult bats are evicted, the young perish because they can’t yet leave the roost or survive on their own. To make matters worse, mother bats may end up in the living space of a building trying to seek alternate ways to get to their pups. By August 1, young bats are mature enough to fly, so eviction methods are safe to resume at that point,” stated Katherine Etchison, wildlife diversity biologist with the Wildlife Commission.
Officials say bats hibernate or migrate south during the winter and provide free pest control, as they eat almost their entire body weight in insects nightly.
Their appetite increases even more so during pup-rearing season, which runs from May 1st through July 31st across North Carolina, according to a news release.
Officials say if homeowners are unable to remove bats before rearing season, it is best to leave them in their roost until the end of July.
However, a Wildlife Control Agent can still come by to seal off entryways that lead into your living space to minimize the chance of human interaction.
Officials say if an exposure does occur, residents are asked to contact their county health department immediately.
In addition, officials warn homeowners that bats return to the same roost each spring, so it’s important to maintain your home after evicting them.
Homeowners can even buy and install bat boxes 12 to 20 feet high in a place with a least seven hours of direct sunlight in the summer.
For tips on buying and installing bat boxes, click here.