Homeowners are not allowed to remove roosting bats found in attics until the bats' migration period begins. This is a picture of a coloy of bats found in an attic in North Carolina.
Photo: Andrew Cole
Photo: Andrew Cole

Homeowners not allowed to remove roosting bat colonies in attics, here’s why

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Biologist and animal removal expert Andrew Cole has seen it all and captured it all. 

On Tuesday, he showed WSOC-TV pictures and videos of bat colonies inside homes in Matthews and Waxhaw, North Carolina. 

"I've probably done 40 to 50 jobs since March," he said. 

The TV station met with Cole in Mint Hill while he inspected a house that's infested with dozens of bats. 

Cole said removal restrictions are in place to make sure bats don't get trapped inside homes. 

"You want to give time for the baby bats to mature to gain the ability to fly and at that point you can properly evict them."

The restriction will be lifted in two weeks when bats start migrating. Until then, there's nothing worried families can do. 

>> Related: PHOTOS: Bat removal restricted until migration season in two weeks

"The biggest threat that they pose to people is the potential exposure to rabies," Cole said.

According to WSOC, state records indicate eight bats with rabies have been captured in the Charlotte area since May 2017.

The cases are rare --- but still reason enough to cause concern for all the families who are stuck with bats the rest of the summer. 

"People get pretty hysteric," Cole said. 

To have an expert bat proof your home could cost anywhere between $300 and $3,000. If you have a problem you only have another eight months to act before the bats start moving back in. 

Bats aren't the only animal homeowners need to keep an eye out for right now. 

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While we were interviewing Cole, he showed us a Copperhead that he caught outside a pool in Matthews recently. 

It's a good reminder to keep watching the ground because snake season isn't over until October. 

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