Florida ACM uses extreme care in the bat removal and relocation of bats from your home and repairs the entry points to avoid future problems.
Bats are most notably characterized by the smell of their droppings (Guano). They fit in extremely tight spaces, and spend the day within this area. They leave the area soon after sunset to begin their nightly foraging. You will see Guano on the exterior of the building, usually at their entry point, be able to smell it from a distance, and in most cases the customer or a neighbor will have seen them exiting the building. They form large colonies when they take up residence. Bats are associated with disease that affects people. Rabies is a dangerous and fatal disease if left untreated, but only a small percentage of bats tested in Central Florida have been infected with this virus. However, if you find a bat in your home and that bat has had the potential to come in contact with any pet or person in the home, the bat should be tested for rabies. If the bat is dead, it should be refrigerated (not frozen) and your local health department should be contacted. Histoplasmosis fungus is contained in the bat droppings. It can affect humans if inhaled in a confined area like an attic. Bats are very beneficial to the ecosystem, eating thousands of insects per night. Learn more about our friends the bats at the Florida Bat Conservancy.
Florida is home to thirteen species of bats, some are here all year while some migrate. All thirteen species are insectivorous which means the each bugs, like, beetles, plant hoppers, true bugs, flies, mosquitoes, flying termites, flying ants and a number of other insects. Some species of bats form colonies while others roost alone. There are also seven species of bats that have, on occasion, been found in Florida but they do not normally live here. These are referred to as accidental species.
Big brown bat
This medium-sized bat has long, glossy, chestnut-brown fur and broad blackish wings. It roosts in attics, hollow trees, outbuildings, culverts and under bridges. When roosting in caves this bat often chooses a spot near the entrance, sometimes in partial sunlight. Compared with other bats, the big brown bat is a well-studied species, and quite a lot is known about its habits. Banding studies have shown that most of these bats live their lives within about 10 miles (16 km) of their birthplace. They typically begin hunting about 20 minutes after sunset, and spend about 90 minutes a night foraging. The feed mainly on beetles, but also eat caddis flies, moths, and mayflies. They weigh about 14-25 gm and consume 50-100% of their body weight in insects each night, depending on whether or not they are lactating. Nursing females must eat their own body weight in insects to produce enough milk for the young. ID tip. These bats are relatively slow, straight fliers Brazilian free-tailed bat A medium-sized bat, typically reaching about 4 inches in length with a wingspan of about 12 inches. The free-tailed bat is named because the tail protrudes noticeably beyond the membrane that stretches between the tail and hind legs. It is the only bat in the eastern United States that has this trait. These bats are medium to dark brown in color, slightly lighter on the belly. Their ears are broad and rounded. Toe hairs are very long and stiff. The Brazilian free-tailed bat is a highly colonial cave bat that has adapted to human structures, where many now roost. In some parts of the southern United States the species is active year round, roosting in buildings, under bridges, and in caves. Many also migrate southward into Mexico and Central America. Free-tailed bats forage on a variety of flying insects especially small moths and beetles. More species of bats you may encounter in florida are the, Tricolored bat, Eastern pipistrelle, Eastern red bat, Evening bat, Florida bonneted bat, Gray myotis, Hoary bat, Northern yellow bat, Rafinesque’s big-eared bat, Seminole bat, Southeastern myotis, and the Velvety free-tailed bat.
Bat houses are designed to mimic the native bats’ natural habitats. In central Florida, this includes long-dead trees (snags), dead palm fronds, Spanish moss, buildings, and the rare Florida cave. These provide safe, dry homes that are easy to grip and offer refuge from daylight, given that bats are nocturnal. Populations can range from a few bats to a few thousand on average. In recent years, many urban areas across North America have undertaken costly and damaging insecticide spray programs to reduce exploding mosquito populations in an effort to mitigate the risks of West Nile Virus. As well, homeowners spend hundreds of dollars for propane-powered mosquito traps so they can enjoy their backyards without being driven to madness by mosquitoes. Bats will do the job for free, bats will reduce mosquito populations for free and without using harmful insecticides. However, they need a safe and suitable nesting location to call home. Bat houses provide an alternative space to keep bats from nesting in the eaves or attic of your house but still will attract these beneficial mosquito-eaters to your yard where you want them.