Say Goodbye To Mosquitos Forever! Build A Bat House




Attracting bats to your backyard is one of the safest and most efficient, natural methods for insect control. One small brown bat can eat 1,200 insects per hour. Imagine what an entire colony can do!

Attract bats to your yard by building a bat house.

Bat house Location

Finding the best location for a bat house is one of the most important factors in attracting bats.

The temperature inside a bat house is critical. These furry creatures prefer temperatures that are between 85 to 100 F (30 to 38 C). This means that locations should be in sunny areas, and the color you choose to paint your bat house will affect the warmth or coolness of the structure. The house should be painted brown or gray. Three coats of flat,, exterior, water-based paint are best. If the location of your bat house will only get a few hours of sun a day, be sure to paint it a darker shade, while a lighter color should be used on houses placed in areas that receive long daily sun exposure in hot temperatures. Many bat lovers find that they are more successful using double houses. Double houses are either side by side or back to back, with one side dark, and another side light. This method allows the bats to relocate within the same structure according to their needs.

Your bat house should be located within a quarter mile of a freshwater source like a pond, stream, or artificial source. The home should be about 15 to 20 feet off the ground. This offers the inhabitants open, direct flight access and better protection from predators such as birds of prey and snakes.

There are many bat house plans available on the internet and most will work in areas where a colony is already established, but if you are concerned about attracting bats to your bat house remember: the bigger the better. Larger bat houses offer a greater variation in interior temperatures and space needed for females and their pups.

Bat homes can be set out at any time during the year, but bats tend to set up their colonies in early spring.

Building a Bat House
A bat house should have chambers that are at least 14 inches wide and 24 inches tall. It should have a wide landing area with a very rough surface beneath the entrance. Use 1/2 inch exterior plywood or cedar for the construction. Both have the rough surfaces bats need in order to grasp. Be sure not to use pressure treated lumber. Modern methods of preservation that no longer harm humans, can still hard other wildlife such as bats.

Once you have built your bat house and set it in the proper location, it is time to think about maintenance. Any wasp nests should be cleaned out each winter and new caulk and paint should be applied every three to five years. Collect bat guano (poop) regularly with a shovel and gloved hands and dispose of it in your compost pile or garden beds. It makes for a fantastic fertilizer.

Remember that these creatures are wild animals. Warn children and visitors that they should not be caught or touched.

Enjoy a pest free summer with your newly installed bat houses and watch as they put on a show swooping around, catching mosquitos every sunset.

Ariana Marisol is a contributing staff writer for REALfarmacy.com. She is an avid nature enthusiast, gardener, photographer, writer, hiker, dreamer, and lover of all things sustainable, wild, and free. Ariana strives to bring people closer to their true source, Mother Nature. She is currently finishing her last year at The Evergreen State College getting her undergraduate degree in Sustainable Design and Environmental Science. Follow her adventures on Instagram.

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Sources:

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