Gray Myotis (a.k.a Howell’s Bat)
The Gray Myotis or Howells bat removal and control is a specialized service that should only be performed by a professional bat removal and control company that is familiar with the exact animal itself, Improper handling or removal and control of these animal can actually harm the Entire colony! Call a professional! You can find a professional bat removal company here.
If you’ve had a bat or two appear in your house, or if you’re hearing noises you suspect are made by bats, a little bit of investigation will go a long way. Depending on the time of year, it may be an isolated incident, or evidence of a resident maternity colony; here’s how to tell the difference, and how to proceed in either case.
As its name implies, the gray myotis is an unremarkable-looking grayish or brown medium-size bat. Found in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia, it is classified as Endangered throughout its range; if you suspect that you have this bat in your attic, careful action is called for.
Disturbances from cave exploration, the opening of caves to the public, and the flooding of caves through dam-building have caused a serious decline in populations of this bat. Hibernating bats can die if they are awakened when no food is available. While the species' present total population is estimated to number over 1.5 million, a study in 1982 estimated that about 95 percent of the bats hibernate in only nine (9!) caves in Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Illinois, and Tennessee.
A true cave species, the gray myotis feeds on various insects and often eats mayflies. Females and young congregate in huge numbers apart from the males; the maternity colonies disband in late July or August after the young are weaned. These bats move in large flocks between summer and winter caves, with hibernating colonies forming in October (this is when they might mistakenly wander into human structures). Most members of this species hibernate in only a very few specific locations.
The gray myotis doesn’t establish colonies or roosting sites in human homes; if one does appear in your home, it’s there by mistake and probably just wants to escape.
Hearing Noises? Identifying the Culprit, Grey Myoyis?
First of all, is essential to verify that a nuisance is caused by bats, and not some other animal. Scrambling, scratching, and thumping sounds coming from attics and walls may be caused by rats, mice, or flying squirrels. Twittering and rustling sounds in old chimneys, often attributed to bats, may be caused by chimney swifts. Bats often become noisy before leaving their roosts at sunset and may chatter on hot days when they move down attic walls to seek refuge from heat. Thus, an increase in chirping noises about dusk probably indicates bats of some kind.
Here’s when you pull out the lawn chairs, lemonade, and bug repellent, and sit outside to watch your house around sunset time. If the "bats" swarm and enter the chimney at dusk, most likely these are swifts; a chimney cap will go a long way towards dealing with that problem. Bats will be seen leaving 15-45 minutes after sunset in midsummer. Make note of all the exits the bats are using, and make an approximate count of about how many bats you have (this is important for setting up bat boxes later on). During daylight hours, look for dark staining or smudges along the roofline; these may be places where bats are entering the building, where the oils in the bats’ fur has rubbed off.
Gray Bats in Early Fall
The discovery of one or two bats in a house is probably the most frequent problem. Gray bats enter homes through open windows and doors, but may use any crevice it can find. This usually occurs in the early fall when bats are checking for potential roost or hibernation sites. As mentioned earlier, gray bats enter homes only by accident, and aren’t known to establish colonies or roosting sites outside of caves.
Letting Them Out, Performing a grey bat exclusion
Any bat will usually find its own way out; jut open all windows and doors leading to the outside. Bats usually will not attack a person even if chased. Never swat or throw things at the bat, or run around waving. All this tends to do is confuse the bat and leave you exhausted. Above all else, calmly watch the bat to make sure it leaves. If the bat refuses to leave, it will calm down and land on something. Drapes and hanging clothes seem to be the preferred rest areas. Place a small box or can over the bat, then gently slide thin cardboard under the "trap" to collect your bat, then release it outside. At last resort, local health authorities can be called to collect the bat, though this may result in its demise. If the bat, or any wild animal, has come in contact with pets, children, invalids, etc. contact your local health department. Health department recommendations vary from state to state.
Gray Myotis Exclusion
These are animals that can hone in on a single mosquito flying through the air; a ½ inch crack in the side of a house is easy for them to find. Look for cracks or gaps around the roofline of your house, and seal them up carefully, after ensuring that your attic is completely free of bats; you don’t want to trap any inside your home.
There are several ways a professional bat abatement company can help. Look for a company who has experience finding all the tiny entrances bats use to enter and exit a structure, and in sealing up those gaps. A professional bat abatement company will also use only the most effective exclusion and removal techniques, in compliance with all state, local, and national regulations.
Grey Bat removal and control is a specialized service, not everyone or every company is qualified to handle this type of Job, we recommend the company’s that are found on this website in our locate a pro section. Choose your state, then the closest area to your location and call the number.
The picture above is only for referance, This is not a picture of a grey bat.
We have many pages on several different species of bats, please use our main bat removal page for specific species of bats needing controlled.