|Life||Bats are nocturnal. They are not blind, but do use echo-location as their main method of communication and navigation. There are 8 species of bats in Ontario, the most common being the “little brown bat.”|
|Home||The only mammal who can fly, the bat roost in trees, caves, and attics.|
|Food||Bats are hunt for food while in flight, which means insects (mostly mosquitoes).|
|Young||A single “pup” is born in May, and is dependent upon both parents for about a month.|
If you find an injured bat, never handle him without gloves or a soft cloth. You can scoot him into a box without touching. Bats can escape from very small gaps, so seal the box with little air holes, or put him in a cloth or paper bag or pillowcase and tie the open end. If the bat is cold, wet or injured, he needs help immediately.
Emerging disease for bats: White Nose Syndrome
If there is a bat living in your attic
Because bats are so small, they can get through a hole as small as half an inch! This makes it hard to close all possible entrances, but you can check for bats by watching your roof outside at twilight. Once you have spotted their entry places, you can then close them up. Remember to not close any holes during May to August, to prevent sealing in any young “pup” bats that are inside.
First, install one-way doors over the entry holes, which allows bats to leave but not get back in. You can also place netting that extends for about 10” from the entry hole. Secure the top and sides of the net but leave the bottom open. This system will allow the bats to exit the attic, but will prevent them from re-entering. Leave the netting and one-way doors in place for several days, then check the attic for bats or do another “bat watch.” When you are sure there are no more bats in the attic, you can permanently seal the entry holes.
If a bat has flown into your house
If a bat is found in a house where direct contact, such as a bite, may have been possible, the bat must be captured and sent for rabies testing. This must be done by the Ontario SPCA – it is not recommended that the public try to capture bats.
If there was no direct contact between the bat and humans, simply close all doors leading further inside the house and open the door or window that directly leads to the outside. The bat should fly out soon.
If you have been bitten by a bat
Immediately wash the area with soap and water. Call Public Health to report the bite, and visit your doctor or a hospital the same day.