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Old 1 Week Ago   #1
bower
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Default I have a bat!

I know bats are not pests (unless they get in the attic), but this seemed like the forum to post about a new critter.


There are no bats in the area where I live, period. No one I've spoken to (up to 83 year old) has ever seen a bat here on the avalon. I have seen bats in the Bonavista area where I used to spend summers with my grandmother, and there are bats in White Bay where my mom is from, but not around here.



A couple of weeks ago the dregs of TS Gordon blew through here with very warm, thundery, wet and windy weather. I first sighted the bat just after Gordon blew through. Thought it was a bird first, just at dusk, but flying back and forth so strangely I had to stop and take a closer look. It was close to the house and on one of the passes flew straight toward me standing in the window and I could see the little ears! And then I knew it was a bat.
I have sighted the creature twice since then, always at dusk on a warm day and flitting around near the house and over the garden. There are lots of moths and other insects here so I'm sure little bat is getting a good feed. Today I was out prepping a bed on the other side of the house and looking around for wherever a bat would roost, sure enough there is a small hole in the eave on one corner, which I reckon is where little bat is living.
I am not too worried about letting it winter over inside the eave of the house, which at least is better than having them in the attic. But if it stays on, or multiplies (or finds other stray bats to bring home!) I guess we will have to move them out of it.
Anyway it is a very strange thing to suddenly have a bat.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #2
GrowingCoastal
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You could build it a bat house if it survives the winter.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #3
Worth1
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It needs a mate.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #4
Labradors2
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Lucky you! We have bats. I've seen then flitting around the corner of the house in the evenings, as well as around the street light at the bottom of our driveway.

A few years ago, we bought two (official) unpainted bat houses, and installed them facing east, but bats apparently don't like them. A robin nested on top of one this spring. Perhaps they prefer to hang out in the forest across the street......

I hope that your bat makes it in NFD.

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Old 1 Week Ago   #5
imp
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Well, Bower, you've gone batty! Hope the little one survives the winter up there.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #6
brownrexx
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Bats hibernate for the winter in caves, rock piles and other places like that. It should leave your house when the weather turns cold and then you should cover that hole so that it does not roost in there next year. They do like to return to the same location each summer.

A bat box could be a fun idea. We had one of those at our cabin in Western PA and I could look up inside with a flashlight and see lots of little faces. I used to set up a lawn chair at dusk and sit nearby and watch then. As it started to become dusk I could hear scratching around and sometimes little squeaks and then they would just seem to let go one at a time and fall straight down out of the house before taking flight. It was really fun to watch. We had about 20 of them in that one house.

HOWEVER don't make the same mistake that I did and attach it to your house. Bats pee and poop a LOT during the time that they are in their house and ours was right above a deck so I had to put a catch pan under it and that stuff was stinky. The pee also ran down the side of the cabin and had to be cleaned off. We re-located the bat house after that first year.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #7
PaulF
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We see very few bats around here which is surprising since the Missouri River bottoms have enough mosquitos to feed an army of bats especially this year with the Corps of Engineers releasing so much water from upstream we have been flooded all summer and fall.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #8
brownrexx
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Bat populations are having a tough time due to a fungal disease called White Nose wiping them out.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #9
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Texas has a huge population of bats and I mean huge.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #10
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Here is but one of many.

https://youtu.be/P_tykwBvqZ0
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Old 1 Week Ago   #11
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Well, bats are carnivorous mammals and that means a diet strong on protein. Having a bat in your neighborhood is a good thing because they eat bunches of bugs, including mosquitoes. But even Martha Stewart will say that having a bat living inside your rafters or other structures of your house is not a good thing. The primary concern is their scat - also called guano. If you wish to keep the little critter nearby, make that bat box and hope for a move-in event. Bat guano is a nasal aromatic nightmare filled with a lot of ammonia flavors.

Having said that, bat quano can be a real prize for your gardening adventures. The old saying that someone has "Bats in their Belfry" rings true because it says that folks who keep bats inside their buildings are just plain crazy. or, in my opinion, nose dead.

And, if the little guy doesn't make it thru the winter, you may have a decomposition issue. I can only strongly suggest the bat box with some kind of heat source or you're heading for a mid-winter funeral service or a spring "dig out the stink".

Take care and make a decision which is best for you.


This advice comes from experience. I'll let your imagination figure that one out. Suffice it to say that you probably wouldn't let a family of raccoons use your attic for their outhouse.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #12
bower
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Thank you all for personal experience, and I heartily agree with and appreciate all the comments.
I am worried about this lone bat which doesn't have a mate and is lost afaik, in an area where there are no others. Not only (I read) that they are social animals but hibernating alone in the winter would have to suck, without any warm bodies to huddle to.
There is actually a bat sighting hotline set up for the atlantic provinces, because they are tracking this white nose disease. Apparently it is not in Nfld yet, but they are monitoring to try and help the bat population. So I will be calling these guys to see what they make of this strange situation. Maybe they would like to rescue this bat, we'll see.
I think there are no bats in our area because there are no caves, that I know of. So there are no natural places for them to hibernate.
Also if this bat blew in on Gordon, I wonder where it came from and how far.
It appears to be a healthy animal certainly strong and a good flyer. I thought I saw it out mid afternoon today which is strange but it was warm enough to forage then. My friend brought her little boy for supper and we kept an eye out for "bat hour" but saw nothing, then took a walk around the garden after dark before they left. It was cold enough to see your breath out, and that is enough explanation for why it would venture out in the day IMO, and is not out and about tonight - nothing to eat! But needing to feed up if it's going to survive the winter.
It would be lovely to have bats as part of our ecosystem here, but that depends on there being places for them to winter. I just don't think we have natural habitat for them, or they would have been here all along.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #13
bower
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Re: guano. Just thought I would mention that there were a lot of fat flies around that little hole into the eave, and another reason I thought this is where bat is holed up.
Bat may have come out this afternoon to eat the flies it attracted.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #14
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Down here they eat mosquitos at night,and early am,scary though when they zip bye.In Key West Fl. early days bat houses were built for the skeeters,then came the vampire scare,air conditioning,We gets baby’s fall down,wife takes them to David Frost Mesuem raptor plus drop off 24 hour on site facility.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sugarloaf_Key_Bat_Tower
https://www.frostscience.org/
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Old 1 Week Ago   #15
bower
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"scary though when they zip bye"
The first time I saw bats, we were living in Colombia and had a vacation in Santa Marta on the coast. There were lights in the pool so we could swim at night and that was fun, but... turned out bats were divebombing the pool to skim insects off the surface at night. So my first encounter with a bat was not seeing it but getting clipped by something as I got out of the water. And then we just watched in amazement... they were all over it. Night swims.. not so interesting.
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