Built to the Organization for Bat Conservation specifications, the Wild Bird Store offers several sizes of bat houses. Bats are important in the environment. Bats consume enormous amounts of mosquitoes every night. A single little brown bat eats hundreds of mosquito-size insects an hour. A typical colony of big brown bats protects local farmers from costly attacks of 18 million root-worms each summer. Bats are also responsible for pollination. For example, they are a major pollinator of the iconic Saguaro cactus in the Sonoran Desert. Did you know? Bats are not blind. Bats do not get caught in your hair. Bats do not interfere with feeding backyard birds. Very few bats actually have rabies. Some studies show that only ½ of 1% of bats test positive for rabies.
Built to the Organization for Bat Conservation specifications, the Wild Bird Store offers several sizes of bat houses. They are constructed from cedar. The largest houses use ¾“exterior plywood for the back panel. Bats like to roost in slots, and they need extended landing/launching platforms which all of our boxes provide. They have either rough wood or nylon mesh interiors for maneuverability. Our larger bat houses have a slot in the front, made intentionally to provide adequate ventilation.
Not all bats use bat houses. Throughout most of the USA and Canada, the Little brown bat and the Big brown bat use them. In the southeast, these two bats have mostly been replaced by the Southeastern bat. Other bat house using bats are: Pallid bats, found in arid habitats; the Evening bat, Eastern pipistrelle, Yuma myotis and Mexican free-tailed bat, all found in the south and southwest.
Bats awake from hibernation and return from migration as early as March in most of the US. In the extreme south, they may remain and stay active all year. They will be abundant throughout the spring, summer and early fall.
Place a bat house at least 10 to 20 feet above the ground on a pole, post, building or tree. The higher you place it, the better. Poles, posts and structures seem to be more successful than trees. If in a hot climate, please face the box to the north. Any other direction will fry the bats during a hot summer Tucson day. Otherwise, face them south to southeast to take advantage of the morning sun. In northern states and Canada, bat houses need at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight.
Multiple single chambered houses are more effective than just one because bats tend to separate into maternal groupings (mothers and babies) and “bachelor” colonies. Larger multiple chambered houses are large enough that two or more are not necessary.
Bats are very wary flying mammals, so be wise. Put up a bat house and be very patient. Bats can take from 1 to 3 years to occupy a new house. In addition to wariness around “new” objects, they have great site fidelity, which means that they use and reuse the same nesting and roosting sites year after year. A new site may not be required until the colony outgrows its present one, or until they are excluded from a current site. In other words, if you put up a bat house and it remains unoccupied, leave it where it is for three years before considering moving it to a new spot.
Wild Bird Store Bat Articles: