The Advantages and Disadvantages of Having Bats Living in Ohio
Unless you know what to look for, it is easy to overlook the presence of bats in Cincinnati, Ohio. These tiny creatures sleep during the day and only come out at night when it is more difficult to see them flying in the sky. Even when you see them, you might mistake them for tiny birds.
Here is a look at the positive and negative aspects of having bats living near your home and agricultural land.
The Pros and Cons of Bats in Ohio
Are There Benefits of Bats?
Yes, there are advantages of having bats living close to your home.
Why Bats are Important to Humans
Bats act as a natural form of insect control, significantly reducing the population of bugs close to their nesting places. Fortunately, bats have voracious appetites for bugs, eating as many as six hundred mosquitoes in an hour. These mammals also eat moths, beetles, and other small insects.
Since the insects devoured by bats can harm gardens and natural foliage, having bats living nearby is good for the environment. Since they also eat lots of mosquitoes, bats help to prevent nasty bites that have humans scratching at their skin for days. Mosquitoes carry diseases that can be transmitted to humans. Reducing their numbers helps minimize the risk of humans contracting a disease from these insects.
Ecological and Economic Importance of Bats
Bats are economically significant, non-domesticated animals in North America. Therefore, conservation is essential for the integrity of ecosystems and in the best interest of national and international economies.
For agriculture, bats play an important ecological role as they are ravenous predators of nocturnal insects. They help pollinate plants, suppress anthropods, spread seeds, and distribute and recycle nutrients. They are a huge benefit for controlling insects as they eat huge numbers of them that can damage their crops.
The economic consequences of losing bats in agriculture can be significant. For example, research has estimated that a single colony of 150 big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus) eats nearly 1.3 million pest insects per year, contributing to the disruption of population cycles of agricultural pests.
What are the Disadvantages of Bats?
The Disadvantages of Having Bats Living Close to Your Home are Significant.
Unfortunately, bats often nest inside manufactured buildings, including houses, sheds, and garages, when bats live in urban areas. Bats can squeeze into small openings as narrow as a quarter of an inch, so it is easy for them to find their way into most structures without leaving any telltale signs at their entry point.
The presence of bat guano and urine can make humans sick. If treatment isn’t obtained quickly enough, death can occur.
Rabid bats can transfer rabies to humans through their saliva. Although, however, a bite is the most common method of catching rabies from a bat, simple contact with its saliva can also give a human the disease.
Economic and Ecological Disadvantages
As bats have benefits both economically and ecologically, their conservation continues to be mandatory. As controlling the insect population in agriculture is a benefit, they additionally cause damage to livestock, agricultural crops, buildings, and infrastructure. Humans on-site are vulnerable to bat bites and the transmission of disease.
So, What Should You Do If You Have Bats on Your Property?
After reviewing the pros and cons of bats in Ohio and despite the beneficial aspect of reducing the bug population when bats live in your area, the risk of becoming ill is too severe to ignore. The disadvantages far outweigh the advantages. Therefore, if you discover bats living in your attic, garage, shed, or basement, you should contact a wildlife removal company for fast, affordable elimination of this wildlife animal.