Baby bats, called pups, are born hairless but soon grow fur, begin to fly, and may land in surprising places. I-J Hansen photo

Got bats in your belfry?

You may be noticing more bats. Here is some important info on what to do and not do.

Are you noticing more bats around your house or property? You are not alone!

Mid-summer is the time when landowners typically notice more bat activity, may have bats flying into their house, and occasionally find a bat on the ground or roosting in unusual locations. These surprise visitors are usually the young pups.

“In July and August, pups are learning to fly, and their early efforts may land them in locations where they are more likely to come in contact with humans,” said Mandy Kellner, biologist and coordinator with the BC Community Bat Program.

If you find a bat, alive or dead, never touch it with your bare hands. Bats in B.C. have very low levels of rabies infection, but any risk of transmission should not be treated lightly. Contact a doctor or veterinarian if a person or pet could have come into direct contact (bitten, scratched, etc.) with a bat.

Landowners can visit the Got Bats? BC Community Bat Program’s website (bcbats.ca) for information on safely moving a bat if necessary and to report bat sightings. The Skeena Community Bat Project also has a 1-800 number (1-855-9BC-BATS ext. 19) for further advice.

The Program is currently seeking reports of mortalities at bat colonies in houses, barns or bat houses. The BC Community Bat Program and their support with batty matters is funded by the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation, the Forest Enhancement Society of BC, and the government of B.C.

Female bats gather in maternity colonies in early summer, where they will remain until the pups are ready to fly. Some species of bats have adapted to live in human structures, and colonies may be found under roofs or siding, or in attics, barns, or other buildings.

Having bats is viewed as a benefit by some landowners, who appreciate the insect control. Others may prefer to exclude the bats. Under the BC Wildlife Act it is illegal to exterminate or harm bats, and exclusion can only be done in the fall and winter after it is determined that the bats are no longer in the building. Again, the Skeena Community Bat Project can offer advice and support.

To find out more, download the “Managing Bats in Buildings” booklet, or contact your local Community Bat Program. Visit bcbats.ca or call 1-855-9BC-BATS.

–Submitted story

Just Posted

Fire chases Burns Lake crews out of their own camp

Crews are having to leave after a wildfire reportedly overtook their sleeping quarters

New era coming to Smithers hospital’s radiology department

Digital scanning to improve overall patient service in Bulkley Valley.

People ignoring evacuation order warned of extreme fire behaviour

BC Wildfire Service warns wind makes situation in Lakes District even more dangerous next 24 hours.

BC Bus North ridership rising

Ridership numbers continue to grow each week: ministry

Wildfire evacuees eligible for financial assistance

Urged to register at reception centres in Smithers, Burns Lake and Prince George.

PHOTOS: B.C. city wakes up to darkness under wildfire smoke

The rest of the province also dealing with thick haze as smoky skies continue

Safeway union urges prejection of mediator recommendations

Says mediator asks for too many concessions

To address peacock problem, B.C. city moves ahead on trapping plan

Surrey’s new bylaw focuses on ensuring people no longer feed the birds, ahead of relocation

Hospitals to see ‘delays’ in care after losing Saudi students, health group says

About 1,000 Saudi residents called back to kingdom after suspending diplomatic relations with Canada

Bernier diatribe against ‘extreme multiculturalism’ boosts Liberal coffers

Party spokesperson Braeden Caley says online donations doubled, social media engagement quadrupled

‘Disjointed’ system hinders British Columbia First Nations in wildfire fight

More than 550 wildfires were burning in B.C. and crews were bracing for wind and dry lightning

Castlegar bridge designed by architect of collapsed Italian bridge

Riccardo Morandi designed the Kinnaird Bridge, which is part of Highway 3.

Federal government announces over $115 million to Royal Canadian Navy

Defence Minister Harjit S. Sajjan was at Victoria’s CFB Esquimalt to announce missile system upgrades

RCMP nab prolific car thief after month-long, B.C.-wide search

A province-wide warrant was issued for Brian Robert Stephan in June for a litany of offences

Most Read