What You Need to Know About Summer Bat Removal

May 29, 2024 | Blog

Des Moines, IA Iowa Bat Removal

What if you discover bats in your attic in June? You can call us for a quote, but it might help to know that we will delay removal. Here in Iowa, there are specific rules regarding bat exclusion during the summer months, all to protect these fascinating creatures.  

Why the Wait?

June is prime bat maternity season. Mama bats have their pups (baby bats!), who are completely dependent on their mothers for nursing. Bat pups are born naked, blind, and unable to fly for about two months, making them vulnerable.  An interesting piece of trivia is that bats are the only flying mammals, which also means they have belly buttons! 

Standard bat exclusion methods like one-way doors that allow bats to leave but not return would separate these helpless pups from their mothers, essentially condemning them to death. This is why Iowa’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has a bat removal regulation in place. From June 1st and roughly around two months, it’s illegal to disrupt a maternal bat colony with dependent young, even if it’s your house.

What to Do Instead:

Don’t panic! Bats are actually beneficial, eating tons of mosquitos and other insects. If you have bats in your attic during this time, here’s what you can do:

  • Enjoy the (free) pest control! Bats are excellent natural pest controllers.
  • Seal any entry points bats might use to get into your living space. This is to prevent bats from entering where you reside but allow the current residents to leave and return to their pups. 
  • Wait for the all-clear! Once the pups are old enough to fly on their own, the DNR gives the go-ahead for bat exclusion efforts to resume. This typically happens in mid-to-late summer.

We Can Help (Later)

Even though we can’t remove bats during peak maternity season, Bats and Bugs Pest Solutions is happy to help! We can:

  • Provide a free quote for bat exclusion services once the time is right.
  • Offer advice on sealing entry points and bat-proofing your home.
  • Schedule a follow-up appointment for bat removal when it’s legal and ethical.

Remember, bats are a vital part of our ecosystem, and these rules don’t apply only to the city of Des Moines but also to the entire state, which means we’re all in this together, from Adel to Urbandale. Trying to exclude bats that may be potential mothers from your home during these vulnerable months can result in harm to the young, which may end up panicking and trying to make their way into your living spaces before dying, potentially decomposing in the attic or between walls.  It’s just a better option to leave things alone and stay away from the site for a month or two.  By understanding their life cycle and Iowa’s regulations, we can coexist with these fascinating creatures. 

Slow motion video of Bats at Maquoketa Caves State Park 

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