RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- It's time to check your attic for bats.
The flying critters are nearing their mating season, and it's against North Carolina law to remove bats during their mating season (May 1-July 31)
"Young bats are flightless for three to four weeks after birth and depend on their mother for survival during that time. If a homeowner waits until May to install an eviction device on the opening that the bats have used to get to their roost, female bats will not be able to get to their young, leaving the pups to starve to death or try to find other ways to escape, including entering the homeowner's living space," according to Katherine Etchison, a wildlife diversity biologist with the North Carolina Wildlife Commission.
Bats in your home may be unsettling, but it happens more often than you might think.
"You won't see them flying around, but if you go into your attic and look toward your vents, you'll see them," North Carolina Wildlife Commission damage control agent Darrell Roberson said. "They will be hanging on that vent during the day - they are on the roost."
In the spring, when the weather is warming up, bats make their way back into the Carolinas.
Seventeen species of bats call North Carolina home; three of them are considered endangered.
Bats are important animals for the ecosystem. The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission reports that bats eat nearly their own body weight in insects every night, and even more while they're raising their young.
Wildlife Control Agents with the commission encourage homeowners to get rid of bats before May 1, because if you don't, you'll need to wait until August 1. If you don't get the bats out by May 1, you can still get Wildlife Control Agents to check and make sure the bats cannot get into your home's living space.
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