Bat Removal And Control MN
There are seven species of bats that are native to Minnesota: the Little Brown, Keen’s Little Brown, the Big Brown, Pipistrelle, Silver-haired, Red, and Hoary. All of these species are insect eating. They are between 3-6 inches long, have a wingspan of between 9-15 inches, and weigh between 0.2 to 1.1 ounces. The Hoary bat is the largest found in Minnesota, and the Pipistrelle is the smallest. The Little Brown bat is the most common species in the summer. The Big and Little Brown bats are colonial species (they live in groups) and are the ones most often found residing in bat houses. During the summer bats have their pups; usually one or two during June or July. Since Minnesota can get very cold in the winter, most bats will migrate south to warmer climates or hibernate until the weather is warm again.
Bats have adapted well to our urban and suburban environments. Bats can be found in and around buildings, bridges, and other manmade structures. The most common place to find bats are in homes in the gable vents. Gable vents are screened vents located in peaks of gables that aid in proper attic ventilation. Although most bats do not have rabies, those that do may be disoriented and unable to fly, which makes it more likely that they will come into contact with humans. Avoid handling bats or having them in one’s living space, as with any wild animal. Please use proper caution.
Bat Biology: North America is home to many species of bats, but these are the three most common nuisance (colonizing) species in the US: First is the Little Brown Bat (Myotis lucifugus) which is common in most of the US, especially the more northward states. These bats are small, with a wingspan of 8 inches, and a weight of less than half an ounce. The females form large maternity colonies, often in buildings such as attics or barns. Young are born in June, and can fly by August. They can live up to 30 years apparently, though average lifespan in the wild may be about 7 years. They hibernate in the winter. The Big Brown Bat (Eptesicus fuscus) is also common in the northern areas. It has a wingspan up to 13 inches, and can live up to 19 years in the wild. They mate in October, before winter hibernation, and after a delayed fertilization and a 60 day gestation, give birth to one or two baby bats in early June. The Mexican Free-Tail Bat (Tadarida brasiliensis) is common in the south. It has a wingspan of about 8 inches, a weight of half an ounce, and can live up to 16 years. These bats will form huge colonies, up to several million members in some cases. They mate in the fall, but delay fertilization, and one pup is born in early June, and can fly about eight weeks later. All of these bats often roost in man-made buildings, and love the attics of homes. None of these animals are actually blind, but they do use echolocation in order to aid in navigation on the wing. They are all insectivorous, catching insects on the wing.
Diseases Bats Carry: I’ve already discussed Histoplasmosis, a fungal infection of the lungs that results from the fungus that grows on nitrogen-rich bat droppings, but it’s also important to keep in mind the fact that the majority of the cases of rabies transmission in the United States have come from bats. This may be because people are less cautious around bats than say, rabid raccoons, or because bats are very small and can bite and infect people in their sleep. Or perhaps the particular strain of rabies that bats or certain species of bats carry is more likely to infect people. Regardless, if you see a sick bat on the ground, don’t pick it up, because you might get bitten!
Is There a Repellent? There is no registered or effective bat repellent available. Some companies will try to sell anything – there are a lot of so-called bat-repellent or bat-away products on the market, but they are bogus. What About Those High-Pitch Noisemakers? The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a warning against them – ultrasonic sound emitters do not work. There is no quick and easy fix when it comes to bat control. It’s best to have a Minnesota Animal Control Specialist with years of experience take care of the problem!!!!