When it comes to dealing with bats as a pest species, it is fair to say that prevention is better than cure, and the costs and effort required in ensuring bats don't enter your property is much cheaper than evicting them once they are inside. There are a number of different products that claim to be able to get rid of bats, or stop them from roosting there in the first place, but in reality these do not provide an effective deterrent when the roof cavity or chimney provides a warm, dark and secure roost.
Maintaining The Property
One of the most important things when it comes to keeping bats out of a property is to ensure that there are very few opportunities that will allow them to get in. Bats will often get into a chimney by climbing down the chimney pot if there is no cap on the chimney, and they will be able to get in to a roof cavity by climbing through a gap between tiles or even through damaged vents. Many bats will be able to squeeze through a hole that is less than an inch in diameter, so examining your property for gaps closely and repairing these will help to keep the bats out.
The first place to look when you are examining the property is on and near the roof, as this is where bats will usually try and find a way in. It is particularly worth looking for cracked or damaged tiles, and the curved barrel-tile roofing will need to be examined particularly closely as they are vulnerable to inquisitive bats. Any gaps or tiles that are damaged should be replaced or sealed, and for those who are doing repairs then wire mesh and spray foam can be an ideal way to quickly seal up any holes. Before doing this, it is always best to check in the roof cavity to ensure there are no signs of bats already inside.
Provide Alternative Roosting Locations For Bats
Another option for people who are trying to avoid a bat infestation is to provide attractive roosting sites nearby. This is particularly useful for those who do live in an area where there is a significant bat population, and providing some bat boxes in the vicinity of the house will often provide the bats with a much better roosting spot than in the attic or roof space of your property. Bats look for places that are dark and well insulated, and it is best to locate the bat boxes so that they aren't facing the prevailing wind, as the bats will tend to avoid such a roosting spot.
Another benefit of providing bat boxes is that having bats in the area will help to keep the insect population under control, and bats are particularly desirable neighbors in areas where mosquitoes and midges are a problem. These remarkable little creatures can eat up to six hundred insects every hour – imagine what a whole bat box full of bats could do.
Internal Examinations Of Roof Spaces And Cavities
An important step to help prevent a bat infestation is to examine the attic or roof space of your property internally, as this is the most common place in the domestic home for bats to be found. Referring to a professional will often be able to help identify and remedy any particularly vulnerable spots. They can also provide a survey of attic and roof spaces to see if there are any repairs or amendments that need to be carried out seal the roof.
Dealing With An Infestation
In some situations taking steps to prevent a bat infestation will happen too late, and many people examining attics and roof spaces will find signs of bat habitation that they had never noticed. If this is the case, then it is best to ask a bat removal expert to help deal with the bats, as they will be able to remove them humanely and safely, as long as it isn't during maternity season. They will also have the vital equipment that is required to ensure that there is no health hazard from the bat droppings, and will be able to seal the area so the bats won't be able to return.
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