BATS IN TUSCALOOSA: ENVIRONMENTAL HELPERS, BUT BAD ROOMMATES

By WVUA 23 Student Reporter Madison MacLean

As summer heats up, mosquitoes come out. As mosquitoes come out, bats come out to gobble them up, and there’s a small chance those environmental helpers could make your home a refuge.

Derek Watkins from ACE Services in Tuscaloosa said bats are great for the area because they keep the mosquito population down, but that doesn’t mean they’re appropriate house guests. Bat guano can cause allergies in some people, and a bat infestation can cause structural damage.

“Right now we’ve had some above normal weather,” he said. “So we are getting several calls this week already.”

One student said her home was recently infested with more than 50 bats.

“Honestly it was really scary,” said University of Alabama student Madeline Griffin. “Because we had no idea what to do and we didn’t know if they could harm us or hurt us in any way.”

After a visit from a pest control specialist, Griffin said the bats are moving out.

Watkins said if you do discover bats in your home, the most important thing is don’t panic. Pest control specialists can safely remove your new flying friends.

“The first thing we do is an inspection to find out where these bats are coming in or out,” he said. “And then we will install a cone that lets the bats escape.”

After the bats leave the premises, Waktins said any potential points of entry are sealed so they don’t come back. Most bats in Alabama are a protected species and do not harm humans, and there have been no reported cases of people being bitten by bats in or around Tuscaloosa.

“Call a professional,” Watkins said. “It’s very important to get those bats out. They are very beneficial with our environment.”

 

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