How well do bat houses work?

Because I had been hearing noise in the 'green' room that was an add-on to this place(mobile home) and I thought it was rats/mice(the walls on the inside, when it was added on, they put insulation in, but nothing covering it, and we've got stuff to fix that, but it's a 2person job, and mom's been gone most of last few months staying in town), but tonight mom and I just happened to be outside next to that room, and I heard the noises again, and mentioned it to mom, and by the time we started counting all the bats that flew out, we got to 215/216 before they stopped coming out and the noise stopped as well. I was just...I couldn't believe it. I figure 2 or 3 dozen at least flew out before we started counting, so that's probably at least 250 bats living in the walls. And I want them outside...I don't mind them living on the property, just in their own houses, not OURS!
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Lilah Morgan wrote:

Some people have all the luck. I have been studying bats for years, made several documentaries, had rabies shots so I could work with them and just plain dig bats. When we moved out to the country the first thing we did was to put up a bat house. In 12 years, we have seen only a few (total 5?) in it.
It is now obvious that we live in a area where colonial bats do not live and the forest dwellers sleep in trees.
You obviously live in a place where colonial bats do live and I envy you. It is possible to coax them out and into a new bathouse. If you have that many, it will be a serious project and I suggest that you contact Bat Conservation International ( Google BCI) for help.
I don't know where you live and could only guess at the possible species but the first thing you need to do is identify them as there are a number of species on the endangered list.
Merlin Tuttle is the director and we know him well so say hi for us if you talk to him.
Good luck and keep us posted.
Jack Schmidling
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How much of an occurence is it for bats to carry rabies anyways? Joxer's been an inside cat since before his last rabies vaccination expired, and as far as I knew, no exposure to any critter that was a possible carrier(there are no mice/rats here, not he even tries to be a hunter anymore), since it requres him getting off his nice comfy spot on the couch. But now with all these bats, I don't want to take any chances. He will get his vaccination current.
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Lilah Morgan wrote:

Can vary year to year, 4%-11% of the bats tested that were gathered by the public...1%, usually less than 1%, of the bats that were collected in the wild in the form of random studies.
Lar
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Ok thank you. On a side note, went to make sure all the hens were in the coop so I could toss the roosters out(they roam the yard during the day anyway, and one of the roosters, wasn't as content for me just to pick them up and put them out of the coop, got loose and ran around the coop running into anything it could. The fence around the coop yard, the 'wall/door' between the roosting area and the coop yard, the walls inside the roosting area, the door to the yard, anything...was kinda funny...rooster obviously wasn't too smart, eventually I just opened the door and it ran out into the yard, still squawking it's head off.
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On Mon, 02 Jul 2007 05:55:32 GMT, "Lilah Morgan"

Here in Austin, TX we have two of the largest urban bat colonies living under bridges. One bridge houses almost 2 million, and the one up the road from me houses about a million. There hasn't been one case of rabies in the whole fourteen years I've lived in TX. It is extremely rare. Bats with rabies are rare, but even if they do have rabies they just fall and die. It's people who insist on handling a bat on the ground who are prone to rabies. Again, I believe there have been 13 documented cases in a very many years, all due to handling bats on the ground.
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I will check them out when I go to the library this afternoon and have internet access there(well lemme rephrase that, I have internet access here, I just can't do anything but newsgroups). And will keep you posted. They were small dark bats, I figure maybe at best 18inches from wingtip to wingtip. Anymore I couldn't really tell you, it was dusk so I could see them and that was about it.
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Crap the library was closed...new summer hours. On the bright side, went out driving and found a nice creek area, and got some elderberry and red willow cuttings :-)
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They

18 INCHES!!! Holy Batman, Lilah
||||||||||| ( o o ) > "yikes" O
Emilie
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haha well my mom disagrees, she thinks they were only at best 7inches from wingtip to wingtip, but I have no desire to try and catch one to find out...I suck at stuff like that. I really can't remember what an inch is(if you asked to make a line the size of an inch, I'd screw it up). Maybe I was thinking 18centimeters...whatever, they really weren't big...they came out a tiny slit in the wall on the outside of the house
wrote:

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Whew-glad to hear that (grin) I was just thinking what a bat house that would be............... to hold 200 bats with 18 inch wingspans!!! LOL Emilie

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I went to their website, and I couldn't identify our bats since I didn't get a close look at them, and couldn't find any plans for bat houses(we have a blueprint, but I read on BCI's site that some aren't reliable). So I am going to look again today and send an email.
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On Sat, 07 Jul 2007 16:02:39 GMT, "Lilah Morgan"

You can find kits, info, plans to build your own bat houses here:
http://www.batconservation.org/content/Bathouseimportance.html
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Leon Fisk
Grand Rapids MI/Zone 5b
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Here is a bat house plan from BCI. http://www.batcon.org/pdfs/SingleChamberBHPlans.pdf
--
Travis in Shoreline Washington


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On Mon, 02 Jul 2007 04:29:30 GMT, "Lilah Morgan"

You have already received some good info from Jack. I'll just add this link for another Bat organization that is located at the Cranbrook institute in Bloomfield Hills, MI.
http://www.batconservation.org /
Lots of good information available via that site.
--
Leon Fisk
Grand Rapids MI/Zone 5b
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My wife and I had a brown bat colony in our attic. They are very territorial, and dont want to leave their "home" and so will do whatever they can to get back into the house. We hired a "bat guy" (basically a carpenter who knows a little about bats) he sealed up the house around the roof with mesh wire and installed a one way door. Once the bat flies out, the door will not allow them in. Once the bats were all out, he uninstalled the door and closed up the house. He then cleaned up the attic for us, something we could have done, but he explained that dried guano (bat poo) can get dusty and if you breath it in can be very bad for you.
This was really the only method for removing the colony, and was over 6 years ago. No bats have returned.
hth
dvsjr
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