Bats in Winter
While bats in winter are usually hibernating in a cave or have migrated to warmer regions, sometimes bats remain in structures for the winter. Many homeowners are unpleasantly surprised to discover bats in their home during the dead of winter. What they didn’t realize was that bats decided to hibernate in their home. Big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus) are the most common species to select homes to overwinter in Nebraska and other northern states.
What Awakens Hibernating Bats?
What awakens them? One theory suggests the change in temperature (hot or cold) may cause them to stir. This situation can occur when you turn the thermostat up to compensate for heat loss during a cold snap. Another theory wonders if the bats are seeking water. Whatever the cause, you should know that bats are hibernating in your home. You may only have one but you may have more. To learn about inspecting for wildlife, visit Inspection.
What should you do?
- Make sure you follow bat rabies exposure protocols available at the http://www.cdc.gov or contact your local health department.
Educate everyone in the house about how to capture a bat and ensure that the equipment needed is readily available. For information on capturing a bat click Bat Capture
Have a professional wildlife control operator inspect your home for gaps that would allow bat entry and place one-way doors over those and seal off all the other holes that are not being used. While bats won’t be leaving your house until Spring, at least you will know that they won’t be returning.