July 16, 2020
RE: Nuisance wildlife control involving bats encountered in residences
This letter is being sent to you to clarify the previous communication you received from our office concerning Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator (NWCO) work relating to bats encountered in a residence (home or other dwelling).
There has been some confusion concerning what a licensed NWCO may or may not do in relation to bats encountered in a residence. This letter clarifies the steps NWCO’s should follow when responding to bats in a residence.
The goal is to prevent any bats that have been exposed to humans, and potentially the SARS-CoV-2 virus, from being released to the wild.
When responding to a situation where bats are found in a residence:
Licensed NWCO’s may:
- Continue to conduct exclusion techniques to keep bats from reentering a residence;
- Capture bats that have entered the living spaces of a residence;
- Euthanize and properly dispose of bats captured in the living spaces of a residence.
Licensed NWCO’s may not:
- Release any bats trapped or captured in a residence.
For any bats you may encounter in a residence, please continue to follow the already established best practices including all Rabies Vector Species protocols as well as any directives from local health departments.
We have included the previous communication that was sent to all licensees including recommended personal protective equipment, disinfecting and handling techniques. Please refer to this letter and contact us at SpecialLicenses@dec.ny.gov if you have any questions concerning nuisance bat response or the potential impacts of the SARS-CoV-2 virus on bats.
Special Licenses Unit