Got a bat house on your property?

LiquidFeet

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I'm interested in putting a bat house in. I need to rid my outdoor sitting area of mosquitoes, and I think bats might put a dent in that population. The mosquitoes are so bad they keep us from going outside and enjoying our small garden sitting area. Actually, we can go out there if we take those tennis rackets that zap mosquitoes, but then it feels like a video game. We end up keeping score.

We lived with bats when we first moved into this house - they were in the attic. I got good at capturing the ones that accidentally got into the house and taking them out the back door to freedom. They moved out when we got the roof and insulation done. But that's when the mosquitoes moved into the yard.

The biggest issue I think is where to put it. I've read that the bat house needs to be in the sun. Bolting it directly to the sunny side of our house is a no-go because guano will drip down the wall. We don't have a lot of sun which means we can't just stick it on a pole out there in the yard. There's too much shade.

Anybody have experience with intentionally hosting bats or any other advice?
 
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graham418

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Congratulations on considering a Bat House. It is always good to consider these little guys, and control the bugs naturally instead of pesticides. Ideally the house should be in an area that gets 6 - 8 hours of direct sun everyday, and 12 - 20 ft off the ground. There is a wealth of information on the web regarding plans for bat houses.
Good Luck
 

Seldomski

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We have bats in our neighborhood. I have thought about hanging a bat house - we actually were given one as a present. We have not installed it because our yard is small and I worry about our dogs interacting with bats.... getting rabies or other diseases. If I could hang it so that it's completely outside the area the dogs roam AND high enough to be well above people messing with it, I would. When the tree in the front yard gets taller, I may hang it there.
 
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When I lived in St. Louis, I'd do a late night dog walk. I'd watch the bats circling the street lamps as we walked along the sidewalk and Mr. Dog sniffed. After the walk he and I would sit on the driveway quietly enjoying the silent evening. He'd sniff the air and listen to distant sounds and I'd watch the bats. Those were good bonding times with my dog. Love them bats! Loved that dog too.
 

Novaloafah

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Good timing am thinking about putting one up myself. Whitenose has devastated the bat population in Nova Scotia so hopefully I get some tenants when i do put one up.
 

Big J

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I have had a bat box in my garage for years. A few used to roost in a dead tree by my house. After reading this I will put it on the side of my house that gets lots of sun. I lived in San Antonio Texas for a year in 1980 and would sit outside my apartment door in a courtyard and watch the bats get the bugs off of the porch lights. It is amazing how well they can fly. They would come within two feet of my face before turning. I never got hit by one.
 

James

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What is it about putting it in the sun? Given they live in caves and attics?
 

Uncle-A

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Since you don't have the amount of sun you need and I'm not against the bat house but what if you removed the breeding grounds for the mosquitoes?
 

Wilhelmson

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Assuming you live in the mountains of NH heat is probably more important than where I am 180 miles south. In your situation maybe it would be good on the sunniest side of your home up near the eave vent. Or you could just drill some holes in the eaves and let them live in the attic.

We have a bat living in our chimney which gets sun but I'm not sure it stays in the winter when the boiler is venting. Another lives in a hole in a tree that does get some sun in the afternoon but not much in the winter. At a previous property I put one in the shade that usually had a bat living in it.
 

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I had to pay $1,200 to get bats out of my attic. We could hear them scratching around between floors - very creepy. Couldn’t believe it was so pricey. They sealed up all entry points and put in a temporary way out. After a while they came back and sealed up everything.
 

James

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I had to pay $1,200 to get bats out of my attic. We could hear them scratching around between floors - very creepy. Couldn’t believe it was so pricey. They sealed up all entry points and put in a temporary way out. After a while they came back and sealed up everything.
How did they encourage them to go out and not come back in the escape?
 

Dave Petersen

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How did they encourage them to go out and not come back in the escape?
Was kind of a tube-like structure — didn’t get a good look at it because our house is pretty tall.
 

Dave Petersen

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It is amazing the tiniest of openings in your home bats can fit through.

I had a ridge vent put in our roof a few years ago to prevent ice dams. When they did that they put in many more vents under the overhang as well. Any small gap and the bats could squeeze in.

Got rid of my ice dam issues but ended up with bat problems.
 

Sibhusky

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We have two bat houses, they've been up maybe ten years, never used. However, they love to hide behind all the shutters. For a while we had a ton of bats, but lately not so much, in fact I think we saw none last year. This year there is at least one.

Personally, I did not enjoy it when we had a bat get in the living room a few years back. Fortunately, I was saved by my (at the time) 11 year old Siberian who leapt straight up in the air and grabbed it. She put it down immediately, thank goodness, and we carried it outside. Next day we brought it to the vet along with our dog (booster) as apparently the county wants to examine the bats.
 
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crgildart

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Might keep some out of your attic. Our scout troop has done some state park bat house Eagle Scout projects..
 
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Since you don't have the amount of sun you need and I'm not against the bat house but what if you removed the breeding grounds for the mosquitoes?
That's a bog next to my driveway that I don't own. I'd love to see it drained, but it ain't gonna happen.
It used to be a pond, but invasive loosestrife is filling it up. I miss the sound of bullfrogs at night.
 
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I've read that the bat house needs to be warm or hot. So the house is usually painted black, and it needs to be in the sun. But in this thread people are talking about bats living in shady spots. So what's with that?

Could there be incorrect information on the internet about where to install bat houses ?????
 

Wilhelmson

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Maybe you just have to try the sunniest spot you can. Or poach some dead trees on the sunny side of the bog.
 

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