Will a bat-house fix my bat problem?
Hi there my name is Benjamin Vaughan. As a residential bat control specialist in Ontario, Canada I get thousands of emails and phone calls each year from homeowners who have discovered bats living in their homes.
Many ask about bat houses, specifically 2 questions, will bats live in bat houses? And can I fix my bat problem by putting up a bat house?
The answers are, yes they will live in bat-houses but no you cannot fix your bat problem by putting up a bat house.
And we are going to look at the reasons why putting up a bat house cannot fix your bat problems. Because its actually very interesting.
Now If you live in Ontario and have a bat problem you want fixed, you are probably dealing with big brown bats
Big browns live quietly in millions of Ontario houses. Most homeowners only discover the problem if they spot bats coming out of their roof or they begin showing up inside their homes.
Big browns will enter and exit buildings high up and only need a tiny gap to squeeze into. They are quiet, nocturnal and most of their colonies are quite small which makes it easy for homeowners to miss them.
It may also surprise you to learn there are more big browns in our towns and cities than in the wild.
This is likely because they are better off living inside our modern climate controlled houses than living in caves, crevices and hollowed out trees.
From April to October big browns usually live in the interior walls of houses and not attics which are generally too hot in summer and too cold in winter. Interior walls are where they have their babies and do most of their sleeping. As winter approaches they move into exterior walls and basements and find a cool spot to begin hibernation. Usually between the foundation and wall insulation.
So for temperature sensitive big brown bats our houses provide the perfect place to roost all year round.
And this is why you cannot fix your bat problem by putting up a bat-house. They will not move out of your home if you put up a bat house. Quite simply A bat-house is no upgrade from their current digs.
It would be like you moving out of your home and into a shed.
Over the years I have looked inside hundreds of bat-houses and very rarely have I ever seen bats inside them. If you happen to find some bats in a bat-house know that they are likely just hanging out there much like they hang out behind shutters and loose flashings.
If you have bats living in your home, the hard truth is you can only fix the problem by perfectly bat-proofing the exterior and humanely excluding the bats. This is highly specialized work and unfortunately is not inexpensive.
And It is precisely because effective bat control is so complex and costly that homeowners first want to try inexpensive things like bat-houses.
But since a bat-house can’t out compete our homes putting a bat-house up is a waste of time and money.
Now does all this mean bat houses are useless? No. Bats will live in bat houses if they are properly constructed and placed in the right locations. However the right locations for bat houses tend to be far from our homes and close to water and orchards and in these applications the bat houses are being used for conservation purposes or to help with agricultural pest control.
If you want really great information on the proper use and placement of bat-houses for conservation and agricultural pest control I recommend visiting the website of bat conservation international.
However If you would just like to have a bat free house call or email us and that information can be found at our website batcontrolspecialists.com