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Fluctuating Temps Can Stir Up the Bats

Ashlee Pitzl

Fluctuating Temps Can Stir Up the Bats

CREATED Feb. 1, 2013

OMAHA, NE -  Bats don't like the cold. They come out when it's warmer.  Exterminators said they've had a lot of "bat calls" this winter, but you can help trap them by drinking coffee.

"Most people don't see a coffee can and think something might be in there," said Caleb Applebaum, an assessment tech for the Nebraska Humane Society.
On Friday, the humane society appeared to have every coffee choice one could think of, but not because they're coffee connoisseurs.  They use the empty cans as bat bait.   
"It's nice, safe and secure," said Applebaum. "It's dark so they're not stressed out by the bright lights. It's really quiet in there. They can't move around too much. They can't hurt themselves so it just works out."
Homeowners like Kathie Sautter know these little critters all too well.
"I woke up in the middle of the night hearing it," she said. "Then it was like, 'What is that?'  Right away, I thought 'bats.'"
While Sautter has never seen them, she knows they are there.
"It sounds like finger nails scratching on the wall or a chalk board," said Sautter. "It's pretty creepy."
After animal control is called out to a home to pick up a bat, it brings it back to the humane society where it sits in its coffee house.
"We set them up in their little coffee cans," said Applebaum. "We give them some water and a little fleece to hang on to. They're in a nice little dark area, and they just kind of sit there until Wildlife Rehab comes and picks them up."
They stay with Wildlife Rehab until winter turns to spring.
"They'll come in and any ones marked that they are ready to go, they take them back," said Applebaum. "They hold onto them until it's warm enough in the spring, and they'll do a big bat release. It's pretty cool."
With 40 degree weather expected this weekend, one exterminator said he expects a lot of bat calls next week.
One can help the humane society by giving them old coffee canisters.