When winter comes, bats tend to hibernate. In fact, bats start their hibernation some time during late fall, which is between the end of October and beginning of November; and they hibernate until the arrival of spring, which starts some time around end of March or beginning of April.
Previously, people used to assume that bats just lived in mines and caves during winter. However, now it is known that bats also make their way into homes and barns. If an enclosed place has temperatures more than 45 degrees, bats will make that place their home during the winter months. In addition, bats are also known to hibernate in structures during winters. If you hear squeezing or scratching sounds during winter emitting from behind the walls, most probably bats have moved in their. At times, bats may come inside the house too. (See Reference 1)
If suddenly the outside temperature increases even though winter has not finished, bats think that spring is round the corner and come out of hibernation. It is common for some bats to come out of hibernation a few times during winter. This they do to rehydrate themselves by getting a drink. This is one of the reasons you can at times see bats flying in the nights from December through February. (See Reference 1)
At times, during winter, the temperature can fall below 45 degrees in places where bats are hibernating. This will cause the bats to leave that place and move to a warmer place. This can cause bats that are hibernating in home to find their way into the basement using plumbing or wiring conduits. If you come across scratch marks in the furnace or ductwork of the air conditioning of your home, then you can end up having bats entering your home in the middle part of winter. (See Reference 1)
Some species of bats tend to hibernate in groups. So, if you happen to find a single bat in your home during winter, in all probability you will have more bats resting during the cold winter months in the structure of your home. (See Reference 1)
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