FAQ

Are they endangered species?

Many species of bats around the world are in grave danger of becoming extinct. In Ontario the small brown bats are on the endangered species list as most of them have died from the white nose syndrome. Big brown bats are not on the endangered species list although they too have been affected by the white nose syndrome.  For more information about the white nose syndrome please visit our Bat News Updates page.

How do I block the bats of my room?

Blocking a bat from some rooms is achievable for a short period of time. Bats tend to enter the living space through the air ducts, cabinets and loose molding. If you want to have a good night sleep you should block the ducts and the gap between the door and the floor with a towel. This should minimize the chances of a bat flying into your bedroom unless there are holes in the walls. A permanent solution to your problem would be to bat proof your house and remove the bats once and for all.

Can I catch something if I touch a bat?

Wild animals come into contact with many things that may not be good for us. Bats transmit disease as any other wild animal might and the same precautions should be taken if you were to handle any other wild creature. We use gloves when handling bats, preferably leather that a frightened bat might not be able to bite through. If you have a bat flying in your house and don’t have gloves to grab it with, using a towel another effective method to catch and remove it from the hous.

How do I chase them out?

Bats are not likely to enter your living space intentionally through open doors or windows. If a bat is in your home it is likely lost and just seeking a way out. Chasing a bat out will only frighten it more. It is best to shut out the lights, open a window or door to the outside and let it leave on it’s own. Bats are really good in detecting air flows so it will be able to find its way out pretty fast.

Can I just sell my house instead of paying to get the bats out?

We have had many customers who have bought houses that had bats. The realtor is obliged to share any information known about the home to any prospective buyers. If you should fail to disclose your bat problem to your realtor or to a prospective buyer, you may be liable to subsequent civil charges in small claims court.

Can I keep them as pets?

Bats are not very good to have as pets due to their unique lifestyle requirements. You can see examples of bats being kept by zoos or by wild life experts for study or rehabilitation but not really as pets. They can become used to humans and can even be handled carefully, but this is not within the scope of the average person and our usual way of living.

Can I lure them out with fruit or other kinds of food?

The bats found in Ontario that you might find in your home are insect eaters and they generally catch these insects while in flight. So fruit and other kinds of food would be quite ineffective and you are more likely to attract other wildlife instead of getting rid of the bats. Bats will come out to feed when the temperature and time is right.

Can I poison them?

Please don’t poison or kill bats. They are an essential part of our ecosystem and many of them are protected by law. Bats in our area are insectivores, so poisoning their food source would be very difficult. Spraying poison into your own attic would be foolish and most likely dangerous to you.

How do I remove the bats?

Bat removal and bat proofing a house is way more difficult than what people usually think. You have to know where to look and be very meticulous so as to close up all gaps in a building. Fear of heights usually stops most people from doing a very thorough job and a lack of understanding of building construction, air flow and bats habits can leave even thorough jobs unsuccessful. The bats are usually not where you think they are, so you can’t just go into the attic and scare them out. You may not find them at all. Bats tend to live in the walls and not in the attic, as the temperature in the walls tend to be more stable.

A successful bat removal would consist of closing all available gaps in a building and placing one way doors over the entry points that bats have already been using.

Do bat repelling devices work?

None of the repelling devices that are on the market today have been proven to be effective in removing bats from a home.  Once the bats have moved in your home, a bat repelling unit is unlikely to force them out. It might work to discourage bats from coming in at first, but not to make them leave. Such devices are commonly used to discourage mice but soon the mice ignore them, bats are not so different. Think of you getting used to your kids playing their own music.

Do bats carry rabies?

All animals can contract rabies. Bats are no exception. The actual incidence of bats having rabies is very rare, only about 0.5% found in bat populations. For more information on the health risks you can visit our Bat Droppings. How do they look like & are they dangerous? page.

Do bats bite?

Bats are no different than any other animal. They do have sharp teeth for eating the insects and will bite if handled incorrectly. I will again mention that bats are much more afraid of you than you should be of them. They are not going to attack you and bite you unless cornered and trapped, much as any other animal would.

Do you kill them or catch them?

We do not kill or catch bats. Some bats are endangered species and are protected by law. The bat is very necessary for our environment not to be overrun by insects. They provide an invaluable service to us so we make every effort to keep them safe. We choose to vent them out instead of trapping, as trapping may lead to fatalities.

Do I need to clean up the bat droppings after the bats are gone?

The short answer is yes, but not always. Bats will always leave something behind, but the type of construction method used in your dwelling may cause bat droppings to never be a nuisance or a danger to you. We have done hundreds of bat removals where the amount of material or its isolation did not pose any hazard to the home owner. We have also done bat jobs where colonies have lived for over 50 yrs. and the guano is stacked up to 6 ft. in height. The choice whether or not to clean after or before a bat job is one best made after a complete inspection is made of the building and a risk assessment is carried out.

Homes that are located in build up areas like subdivisions are highly unlikely that they will require a bat dropping clean up. Usually farm houses and home in the countryside with many years of bat infestation are the ones who require a bat guano clean  up. For more information on the health risks of the bat droppings you can visit our Bat Droppings. How do they look like & are they dangerous? page.

How can I get a bat out of my house?

Bats don’t want to be in your house any more than you want them to be there. They would much rather be outside scooping up yummy mouthfuls of bugs from the air. All it takes is a wrong turn or a little bad judgment for them to end up inside your house. Shut out the lights and heard the bat from the main house areas into a room with a door or larger window open to the outdoors. The bat will find it’s way out. This may not work so well in the winter. Once a bat gets cold he will cease flying and can be carefully put into a box and handed over to animal control or another authority.

How do I handle a dead bat?

Common sense dictates that all dead animals or creatures should be handled carefully, using gloves or a shovel to put them into a sealed bag or other container. If there is a report of rabies in your area, you may want to consult your local animal control authority. Dispose of unwanted dead bats in your household trash once sealed up in a bag or container.

How do I know I have bats?

The most obvious way to know you have a bat problem is visually seeing them entering your home from the exterior. You may not notice this though and a few other things can clue you in to their presence. If you are constantly finding bats showing up in rooms or your basement, it is likely you have bats as guests. You might also hear the noise of them moving in your walls or across the ceilings and you may even hear their distinct clicking noises. One other dead giveaway that you have bats is smell or staining. You may find bat droppings on the walls below their common entry holes or you may smell a powerful scent of urine.

How do they get in my rooms or my basement?

Bats move through a building following air flow patterns. They can be fooled by following these air flow patterns down into cold air returns or all the way down walls into your basement looking for the way out. Often they move during cold spells while searching for a warm place to roost and go back to sleep. Have you ever been confused while a little bit sleepy?

How do they get in?

Bats will enter a dwelling through unscreened vents, holes in soffit and fascia and even through gaps less than one inch wide. They enter areas that they can either fly straight into or can swoop up to and catch onto with the tiny claws on their hands which are found in the wing membranes. A spot that a bat can catch onto, he can pull himself into.

How do you clean up bat droppings and urine?

Bat droppings must be considered toxic and are cleaned up in a manner similar to asbestos or mould. The urine is not in itself dangerous but can lead to mould growth. In the case of the urine, smell is the greatest problem. See “what are the dangers of having bats in my house?” We remove all soiled materials and use biological cleaning agents to sanitize and sterilize affected areas. Every precaution must be taken to ensure that the home is not infected or polluted during this process. We have to stress that all the above are addressed to cases where we have big piles of bat droppings. In 99% of our bat removals there is no need for a cleanup as there are no large quantities that pose a health risk or even justify the cost.

What are the dangers of having bats in my house?

Bats are not very good house guests. They are not toilet trained and don’t keep the same hours as we do. We want to sleep; they are just getting up for work. The habits of bats can cause major damage and health risks for you and your home environment. Bats will urinate in the walls and roof areas as well as drop their guano where ever is convenient for them. This can cause damage to the wood, insulation and drywall in a building over time. This can also lead to terrible smells and the growth of mold in the damp areas. Large amounts of bat droppings can also develop mold that can lead to serious respiratory infections if it is swept up and the dust is taken into the lungs.

How do you get rid of bats?

There are many different ways to try and get rid of bats but there is only one permanent solution short of tearing your building down, and that is bat proofing and bat removal. The entire structure needs to be sealed and screened down to the smallest gap to ensure that once your unwelcome house guests have been moved out, they stay out. You cannot seal up some holes or just their main entry ways. If you were locked out of your house, you would find a way back in. The bats think the same way. The only way to win is leave absolutely no entry way open.

How do you tell if it is a bat droppings?

Bat droppings or guano differ from mouse droppings as bat droppings will break apart under pressure while a mouse dropping will smear and leave a smudge under pressure. For more information visit our Bat Droppings. How do they look like & are they dangerous? page.

How much does it cost to get them out?

Bat proofing can be quite expensive due to the necessity to screen off or seal up every access point on and above your walls, windows and vents. The soffit and fascia areas are favorite entry points for bats as well. This may mean that aluminum repairs or installations may be needed to close up gaps or seal out entire areas. This will serve to beautify as well as protect your home. Not all jobs are as difficult but are still very time consuming. The costs can vary widely based on size, construction methods and condition of a building. We have bat proofed many new homes and owners have been surprised by what builders will call acceptable for gaps and lack of any type of screening over venting areas.

How small of a hole can they get into?

Small brown bats can squeeze through holes less than a half of an inch thick. Think about that that mouse that squeezes under the baseboards. Bats are equally amazing in their acrobatics and entry abilities.

I looked in the attic but I do not see any bats. Do I still have them and if so, where?

Small brown bats tend to stay in the attics. Big browns bats tend to stay in the walls except the period when they give birth. Attics during the summer months have higher temperature compared to the rest of the house which helps the babies to grow faster. Small brown bats after the white nose syndrome are close to extinction so you probably have big brown bats and as we said before they tend to hide in the walls and that is why you may not see them.

If I have a bat in my house occasionally, do I have more?

Having a bat fly in your home does not necessary means that you have bats living in your home. But if you have bats showing up in your living space more than once then we can say that you probably have a bat problem and you will require bat removal some time in the future.

Is it illegal to kill them?

There are some species of bat that are endangered and those killing them could be prosecuted. Check with your local animal control center. At the moment small brown bats are listed as an endangered species.

Should I be scared of them?

Bats are afraid of you! They should not be feared but treated with the respect due to any wild creature, and subsequently left alone.

What do they sound like?

 Bats in Ontario emit sounds far above the human hearing range while they are on patrol. The only sound we can hear from the bats is the clicking of their teeth as they chatter in alarm when disturbed.

 What if just leave them there?

Bats are bad house guests. They don’t mean to be but it just seems to be their nature. Why risk long term damage to your home or your health? A bat infestation is a problem that unfortunately will not go away by itself. If you do not remove the bats as soon as possible, you may end up with thousands of dollars of damages to your home.

Where can I take a bat that I caught?

 Bats survive best in the wild and should be released in a wild area. Bats that are used to living in a home will quickly return no matter how far away you release them. If they are lost and end up in your living space, just grab them with heavy gloves or a towel and place them outside of your house.

Where do they go in the house?

 Many people will look into their attic and declare, “I don’t have any bats, and I didn’t see even one up there!” Unfortunately this isn’t always true.Contrary to popular belief bats do not live in the attic (Big Brown Bats). Big brown bats tend to live in your walls and concealed or insulated areas where the temperature is much more stable than your attic.

Why do bats go into my basement?

 Bats do not go to basements for any reason of their own choice. Usually if a bat ends up in your basement it is because it has become confused or lost in the air flow system of your home and has followed an airflow down a wall and ended up in the basement.

Will they attack me?

Bats are peaceful, gentle creatures that attack only their prey, in most cases insects. They are more frightened by you than you should be of them. We do have a significant size advantage. They are likely to harm themselves trying to get away.