If you hear fluttering, squeaking and other strange noises in the night, you likely have unwelcome guests living behind your walls. Bats are among the most troublesome. Because most species are endangered, federal law prevents you from harming or killing them. That means you cannot seal off entry points in your home while they are roosting inside. Doing so jeopardizes the safety of young bats who do not know how to fly. In lieu of starving to death, the adults will force themselves into your living space out of desperation, resulting in an unsettling experience for you and an often-fatal encounter for them. The complexities of removing them from your home make it easy to pass the problem off for another day. But you’ll want to act quickly. While bats are helpful to humans for controlling bug populations and stymieing the spread of the fatal mosquito borne Zika virus, they are dangerous. But not in the way you might think. Only about six percent of bats carry rabies, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and they hardly ever attack people .The far greater risk to your health comes from guano—or bat excrement.
Guano are black, shiny pellets that crumble to the touch. You’ll find them directly underneath a roost and around entry points, and they’re usually accompanied by dark, muddy-looking urine stains. Because bats eat a third of their body weight in insects each day, they can produce voluminous heaps of excrement in just a couple of weeks. The size of the buildup depends on the number of bats in your home and the length of time they are unattended. In severe cases, these piles will grow several feet high. But if you have large masses of guano in your home, it will become apparent quickly. An overwhelming odor, distinct to bat guano, will emanate from the roost and attract other invasive pests, like cockroaches and beetles.
A few scattered pellets can be swept up without a problem. But when guano pile up, they become a culture medium for fungi. When unaware homeowners try to remove these crumbling heaps of feces, noxious spores that cause histoplasmosis—a life-threatening lung disease—are released into the air and inhaled. Fortunately, not everyone who contracts the disease will exhibit any symptoms. A strong immune system will usually kill the bacteria before a virus develops and the infected person will move on with their life not knowing that their body had been fighting a fungal disease. But people with weakened immune systems, like small children, the elderly and AIDS patients, are especially vulnerable. Early symptoms are closely associated with the flu. In two to three weeks, fever, chills, muscle pain and headaches will set in. But people who do not reach out for help may begin to exhibit alarming respiratory symptoms. Shortness of breath, fatigue and chest pain ensues, with the problem worsening until the lungs fail. Histoplasmosis can be treated effectively with prescribed anti-fungal medication if the infected person seeks a doctor quickly enough. But because of the health risk, homeowners are advised not to clean up guano themselves. Untrained and unwary cleaners will easily inhale spores while working in the narrow spaces that bats occupy. In some cases, they spread through the ventilation system and put everyone in the house at risk. Because of the size of the task, you’re better off hiring guano remediation specialists.
Bio-One has the equipment, the experience and the expertise to get the job done right. Our technicians will remove guano, urination stains and odors from your home for the most affordable price in the industry. We’ll also comprehensively sanitize the property to eliminate lingering bacterial threats. Contact us today and we’ll get the job done within a 24-hour window. Our offices never close.