The bat populace which makes up about 20% of all mammals is the only true flying mammal. There are 42 species in the US and the ones that are dangerous need for bat removal services.
The Big Brown Bat is a fairly large bat in the microchiroptera order. It is about 4 to 5 inches long, weighing in at ½ to 5/8 of an ounce with a wingspan of approximately 13 inches.
This bat is found all over from Alaska to South America. These bats roost in eaves, attics, buildings, barns, and anywhere they can find a place hidden from view. In the winter they hibernate in caves or old mines.
The Big Brown Bat is insectivorous and eats tremendous amounts of insects including some that are heavier than themselves. These bats eat such insects as beetles, wasps, bees, flies, stoneflies, mayflies, scorpionflies, caddies flies, cockroaches, and other flying insects including mosquitoes as well as June bugs, green stinkbugs, and the cucumber beetles.
As can be seen, they eat quite a variety of insects and this is a boon to the agricultural community as well as the backyard enthusiast.
The Big Brown Bat associates with humans and will roost or hibernate in a variety of places including attics, old buildings, barns, eaves, sewers, drain pipes, caves, mines, loose bark of dead trees and tree cavities and have been shown they will roost in man-made bat houses.
Most folks do not want bats in their attics and there are several ways to remove them safely without killing them. If you enjoy the fact that they will keep your insect population under control you might want to think about putting up a bat house or two.
The enemies of bats include barn owls, horned owls, and black snakes as well as insecticides and man.
In the olden days, there were plenty of areas for bats to roost but as man encroaches on their areas and we close mines and caves and clear old forests their roosts are destroyed and they have a hard time adapting because of the shortage of roosts.
Man can help by putting up artificial roosts, which in turn will preserve these gentle creatures and help keep the insects under control and not have to use poisons to control the bugs.
It is kind of ironic that the various insecticides that we use kill the very natural pest control that we have already. Our superstition and aversion to bats caused the loss of this natural pest controller.
Big Brown Bats live to be about nineteen years old in the wild. The maternity roosts may contain several hundred females and their offspring, however, it is relatively unknown as to were the majority of Big Brown Bats actually hibernate.
Many folks are learning how beneficial these creatures are and now are putting up artificial roosts or bat houses.