What kind of damage do bats cause in an attic?

Virginia bats favor attics as maternity roosting areas because it is safe from predators and they provide shelter from natural elements such as rain. Eventually the attic may turn into a permanent roosting area as more and more bats join in the colony. Bats hibernate during winter and they may choose to stay or leave, but after the winter season, those who left, would head right back for the attic in which they were roosting in.

The physical infrastructure of the attic may not suffer from much damage by Fairfax County bats. They would hardly ever rip off insulation or chew on the material, instead, going out to search for food. They are very small in size and can fit through holes as small as a quarter. If there are loose shingles or rafters with gaps, they can become bigger eventually, from excessive use.

Inside the attic however, is a different story. Fairfax County bats feed on thousands of insects a day and their metabolisms are extremely high. They tend to excrete droppings and urine approximately 20 to 30 times a day. Since they live in large colonies, depending on the size that resides in the attic, these droppings can pile up, causing detrimental health conditions and the encouragement of other organisms. The stench can also become unbearable for humans and then there is a risk of contracting airborne diseases.

Should you have bats roosting in your attic, you would have to take steps to get them out. As a protected species, you would not be allowed to trap them or kill them. All you can do is implement an exclusion device that would let them leave the attic but would not let them re-enter. Of course, you risk trapping babies inside while their mother’s leave in search of food, resulting in them frantically flying around your house searching for entry points so that they can get to their young.

For bats to enter the attic, there must be existing faults within your building. Once they take decide that the attic would be their roosting area, they tend to stay for many years. Bats can survive for 20 to 40 years and they do play an important role in maintaining the ecosystem. It is important that you try to be as humane as possible when dealing with these creatures. While they are hazardous to your health and can be a huge nuisance, they have a right to survive and feed.

As a humanitarian gesture, you can build a bat house for them if you notice that they can help protect your environment from bugs and insects. This will protect your attic from more damage as they would have their own habitat to live in. Since they feed on thousands of insects daily, the only reason that they are roosting in your area is because there is a large quantity of food available for them to ingest. Think of all the mosquitoes that could be eating you if it weren’t for the bats!

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