All Species of Bats, even those not specificially listed as Threatened or Endangered, are protected in
the state of Florida under Chapter 68A-9.010, Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.), which covers the
taking of nuissance wildlife species.  While bats may be considered a “nuisance” when they inhabit
man-made structures, most species are insectivores that are critical in the control of agriculture
pest insects, mosquitoes and other problem insects.  A single bat can eat over 100 insects
a night - multiplied by hundreds to thousands to even millions of bats that may live in a single colony,
and you can see the tremendous impact bats have in managing insect populations.
While bats are a truly valuable wildlife species, there is an option for legally / non-harmfully removing
bats from uwanted locations called exclusion.  Essentially, exclusion involves the uses of one-way
exit devices to allow bats to safely exit a roost site but prevent re-entry.  While most commonly
utilized for removing bats from attics or other roost sites in homes / commercial buildings, exclusion
can be used in practically any location to remove bats from manmade structures.
Bats also roost in a large numer of concrete roadway bridges in Florida.  They most frequently roost in the
expansion joints of bridges, where they find shelter from the elements and most predators.  Bats sometimes
must be excluded from bridges when construction activities are proposed that have the potential to harm
bats.  One of the most frequent causes is replacement of the expansion joint seal.  Because a single bridge
may provide numerous roosting sites, it is not uncommon to find hundreds to even thousands of individual
bats roosting in a bridge, sometimes with multiple species roosting at the same bridge.
Michael G. Czerwinski, P.A. staff includes wildlife biologists with decades of experience in wildlife surveying
in relocation.  Most recently, our staff successfully excluded colonies of bats (principally Brazilian free-tailed bats)
from two Florida Turnpike Bridges in Lake County, Florida (SR 19 and CR 586). These exclusions were conducted
to allow construction contractors to safely replace the joint seal and drill / install new guidrail support systems
into bridges occupied by bats.  Following completion of construction, the exlcusion materials were removed and
the bats were allowed to re-occupy the bridge. Below are several videos recorded during the recent Lake County bat exclusion.