Bats getting into homes: what to do & how to prevent it

Bats getting into homes: what to do & how to prevent it (picture courtesy of Genuine Pest Control)

They can fly into your home and in some cases make you sick or kill you.

They are bats and they're getting into a lot of houses in Omaha.

Kelli Brown said, "It can be kind of scary."

As an animal control officer, Brown has seen a lot of bats in people's homes.

Brown said, "Bats will fit through anything basically the width of your pinky, so less than a half an inch...they can squeeze their little bodies through and they can get in through chimneys, attics, open windows."

Dan Nielsen said, “We've been getting a lot of bat in house calls in the last two to three weeks as they're trying to find a place to spend the summer and have their young."

Nielsen is the owner of Genuine Pest Control and he says bats usually pick a spot in attics.

Nielsen said, "If they're getting in your home now we're running out of time to be able to get them out so you'll have to leave them in there throughout the summer until about mid-August, and then you start doing the exclusion process."

Nielsen says otherwise you risk the parents getting out and leaving the babies to die in a house.

Nielsen said, "You're going to have a whole other problem of a bunch of dead, juvenile bats in your attic."

To prevent all this from happening Nielsen and Brown say it's important to keep your doors closed, make sure there's no holes in window screens, and to have a cap on your chimney. If you don’t do this there's a chance you could get sick if a bat with rabies gets inside.

Brown said, "A lot of people don't realize that there's a lot of ways you can get rabies exposure from bats and it isn't just being bitten. It's also if you are in a room asleep and you don't know what a bat did around you while you were asleep, or coming into contact with saliva."

You could also get sick if a bat starts to poop in your home.

Nielsen said, "The guano they carry, histoplasmosis and some other diseases...can really make a person sick."

Brown said, “If you do see a bat in your home try to confine it to one area. Don't touch it. Don't panic. Just call the Nebraska Humane Society. We respond to those calls 24/7."

You can reach the Nebraska Humane Society at 402-444-7800.

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