One of the other outdoor projects that we've tackled recently has been an attempt to remedy our atrocious mosquito problem in the backyard. We've pretty much never used our backyard because as soon as the weather is warm, there are SWARMS of mosquitoes, and no bug spray will deter them. Now that we've built our gardens back there, and especially now that Bean is old enough to play out there, we've really been motivated to get rid of those nasty little blood suckers.
I was, however, adamant that we not use a chemical pesticide in the backyard. I know that they can work well, but I definitely did not want the kiddos and the pup having that much contact with a poison, no matter what it's designed to kill. I also didn't want a bunch of pesticide sprayed near our beautiful vegetables that we're planning to eat. So after doing some research, I decided to invest in a bat house. Yep, you read that right.
According to my research the common Georgia varieties of bats can eat anywhere from 300-1000 mosquitoes per HOUR. They stick to themselves and will not bother pets or children. And it's more likely that you will catch rabies from your neighbor's cat than it would be to catch rabies from a bat. The internet also assures me that it is not likely for bats to move from their bat house to your house, especially in a mild/warm climate like Georgia's.
I admit that I was a little hesitant to see the reactions of our neighbors. Steve had the honor of the first neighbor interaction when he was out hanging it, and our neighbor Suzette asked what the heck he was doing. He cringed but then told her, and he was very relieved when she got excited and said that they wanted to hang one too! I'm still a little nervous about the neighbor on our other side, but if we do actually get bats in there, his yard would benefit too. So...wish us luck with that.
I chose one of the most highly recommended bat houses, and it's also approved by the Organization for Bat Conservation. It is a bit of a gamble, because apparently it can take up to a year+ for bats to move in. We have seen bats in this area though, so we're hoping some will move in quickly and start eating these stupid bugs!!
I'll be sure to keep you all posted if we have success with this or not...anybody else try a bat house?