How To Keep Bats From Roosting Under Your Covered Areas
You have had bats previously in your home and then had a bat removal service performed. Now you are seeing bat droppings by your front door or covered porch areas and do not want to be constantly cleaning up after these bats. It seems to be a problem that many people frequently experience and I know that we get quite a few calls about things people can do to try and deter the bats from roosting there.
So why do bats roost under covered porches or covered entryways? Usually, these are the bats mid-night or nighttime resting places where they like to hang out after they have been out eating and flying for part of the night. Bats will choose a different spot to be during the day, but at night they like the security a dark covered porch provides.
Now I’m going to say a word that you may not like to hear… unfortunately (unfortunately was the word I thought you might not like to hear), there is not a sure-fire thing that will deter the bats from roosting at your home. However, even though there is not a sure thing, there are a couple of things that we can recommend you try to at least annoy these bats enough to make them choose a different location to roost at night.
The first thing we always recommend people try is leaving the lights on for a couple of nights. The reason why we recommend this is because bats are looking for a dark place to rest and roost at night. The idea is to make it bright enough that they will choose a different home to roost. Some people do not like this idea because the light attracts bugs and we completely understand that. With bugs being attracted by the light, it may encourage the bats to stay because they can easily access food to eat, but we have heard from quite a few people that having a light on for a little while does help deter the bats.
Other ideas that some people like to try is lowering the overhead cover for the bats by adding a trim piece of metal, or other smooth objects, where they are hanging. There have been hits and misses with this method of a deterrent for bats. Bats really can’t hang on to metal or other slippery materials like metal and this is another reason why it can work. Often we have seen that the bats will just hang underneath where the metal was installed. Lowering the overhead cover to make the bats uncomfortable doesn’t always work but it is worth a shot if you have tried leaving lights on and that did not work. The problem with this method is that it will cost you some money to make it happen and it is not guaranteed to work.
One that I have just recently heard and thought might be a pretty good idea for someone to try if they are getting very desperate on getting these bats to stop roosting at their home is to set up a fan and have it pointed at the area they are usually hanging. The hope is that the airflow will be bothersome for the bats and they will pick out a new spot to roost.
People ask about bat houses often and some find success with them and others do not. It is incredibly hard to know where a bat will roost or where it will try to live. If you make its roosting spot inaccessible and uncomfortable it may give them a good reason to use the bat house but if you do not do that, they will continue to roost where they feel most comfortable and safe. The other reason why some bats will not use or roost in a bat house is that they do not smell their scent. So many people recommend taking bat guano from underneath their roost and smearing or placing it in the bat house. (If you do try this, wear a mask and gloves to protect yourself from histoplasmosis as bat guano is very toxic.) This will make the bat house more familiar to them and give them a better reason to use the bat house, but still, no guarantees that this method will work either.
Placing wind chimes near or very close to where the bats like to roost is another option people will try. We are also asked about the ultrasonic sound waves that claim to deter bats and I do not believe these to work at all. I have personally been in an attic with one of those going and have seen bats roosting right next to it. That in my mind is enough evidence to say that they do not work, but it is also possible that these bats really just did not care about the sound it was producing and stayed in their dry, dark, warm place.
One thing that I do know to be certain is that bats like to be comfortable. They like it dark and they like to be unbothered. If you make the area they are roosting uncomfortable, they will leave but remember, bats are a protected species and should not be killed or harmed. Please make their roosting spots uncomfortable but do it humanely. Good luck with bat deterrent methods and feel free to let us know if any of these have turned out to be helpful for you!