October 28, 2009,
M.C. asks from Ann Arbor, MI on June 01, 2009
Bats on the Porch
Does anyone know of a way to get rid of bats? Bats have been spending the night tucked away in the corner of my porch by my front door. I have a big maple tree on my lawn with several bushes around my home. I live in a busy sub, but for some reason, every year I end up having some animal like a skunk, opposum, rabbits, ducks, raccoons, just to name a few, moving in on my property. It's kind of an ongoing joke with my neighbors because none of them have these issues with unwelcomed visitors, but it's not funny as it has cost us alot of money to get rid of some of them. This year, it's the bats. When I get up in the morning, there are several bat droppings all over my front porch, which is gross. I've tried leaving my porch light on at night, but that does not seem to deter them away. My city does not have animal control and hiring someone is costly. Any suggestions?
C.J. answers from Lansing on June 02, 2009
It sounds like you need to change the environment around your house to deter the animals that are making their homes on your property.
If you have a fountain or pond on your property then the water source may be one thing that is drawing the animals in. Food for rabbits means a type of emergent vegetation such as shrubs and grasses. They also like berries, vegetables, and fruit. Do you have any of these types of plants, shrubs, or trees on your property?
You also mentioned a bat problem. First off, they are nocturnal and sleep during the day. If you do not see them during the day, then they are just visiting your front porch at night. By leaving your front porch light on you are drawing the insects to your porch and the bats most likely are following their food. Turn off all outside lights and make sure your windows are well covered with curtains to prevent your inside lights from drawing the insects to your windows.
If you do see the bats rooting on the ceiling of your porch during the day you need to make the place they have been roosting into an uncomfortable area to stay. Try hanging a wind chime, table place settings, or something noisy in the spot on your porch. A balloon is a great idea, anchor it so it will bounce along the ceiling of your porch in the corner they sleep in.
Something to think about: bats right now are becoming an endangered species due to a new fungus that grows on their noses while they hibernate throughout the winter. The fungus causes the immune system to use up the stored energy and the bats wake up out of hibernation before the end of winter. Most freeze or starve to death because they wake up before spring arrives and the insects have hatched or emerged from their own hibernation. Try calling your local MSU Extension office and see if they know of a bat rescue organization that will come out and remove the bats for free. Many volunteers are working hard to save these amazing mammals.
For some of the other animals that have been moving onto your property, you will want to put something under your bushes that crinkles as they walk on it. Try heavy duty aluminum foil staked down on the corners with rocks. The animals won't like the feel of the foil on their paws and the sound will startle them. Move the foil to a different area under the bush every week or couple of weeks to prevent the animals from adjusting to the new landscape.
Try setting your sprinklers to turn on near the bushes in the evening when most of the animals you described will be out in your yard. This will make your yard an undesirable place to be and they will eventually move out of the area.
Skunks are a smelly type of feline, so if you have any areas the neighbor cats like on your property, you need to find out what is drawing them to that particular spot and remove the problem plant, bush, home, water-source, etc.
If you have any other questions please feel free to contact me or your local MSU Extension office. The employees at the office will have other ideas to help drive the animals away and keep them away from your property.
Good luck and let us know how it goes!
1 mom found this helpful
J.M. answers from Lansing on June 03, 2009
REmove the food source, remove the bats. You can spray you yard and shrubs for mosquito's during the day. If they don't have anything to eat, they will leave. Tempo is a relatively safe insecticide that is used in restaurants and once dry has no harmful affect on humans. We have used it and kept the mosquito population down.
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K.G. answers from Detroit on June 01, 2009
I don't really know very much about this but you can build a bat house. Try googling it.
L.L. answers from Detroit on June 03, 2009
I too had bats on our front porch. Except for the droppings, they were harmless. Opening and closing the front door did not event startle the bat. We started out with one and ended up with two a few years later. Then suddently they just never came back. I think they are suppose to help get rid of mosquitos.
T.H. answers from Kalamazoo on June 04, 2009
Hi! We had a Small Brown Bat roosting in our covered entryway for 2 summers in a row! We loved having him there! It was a great opportunity to teach my children about them- especially that they eat more than twice their body weight in insects nightly and that bats are an essential pollinator all over the world. We researched all different kinds of bats and had a great time learning. We have been sad that we haven't had one back the last 2 years! We wish one would choose us again. As to the droppings, I would just hose or sweep off the porch. No big deal.
A.C. answers from Detroit on June 01, 2009
This is a wild guess, but could you temporarily nail something like plywood over the "cubby" of your porch to make it a perfectly flat surface so there is nowhere for them to hang?
Good luck. I had an entire colony living in my attic after the airconditioning repair guy left a window open!
K.V. answers from Detroit on June 02, 2009
Your house sounds like mine...I've experienced squirrels in the attic, bats on the porch, rabbits in the hedge, yellow-jacket nests everywhere and now something in the garbage.
Here are some suggestions that have been given to me for bats:
*mothballs (didn't work for me)
*use a mylar balloon or foil in the area that the bat perches (I haven't tried this one, yet...I would like my house to look like a home, not a spaceship)
*spray ammonia in that area (started that last year, I've talked to people that it's worked for. It seemed to help last year, but they are back this year...need to start again and be consistent with it)
M.C. answers from Detroit on June 02, 2009
1) Bats eat bugs that feed on us. Besides the droppings, they're good to have around.
2) Turn off the porch light, it's attracting their food source.
3) Turn on a light away from your porch. -Eagle Scout Dad.