Over the past decade interest in bats has grown by leaps and bounds. However with all the new manufacturers of bat houses in the market place you will find that most of the bat houses that are being built without any guidelines for proper constructions details, proper size and least of all the requirements for the bats. Bat houses are now being built to generate sales for the all mighty dollar, "not for the requirements of the Bats".
Back in 1998 Bat Conservation International introduced a program that would help bat house builders with the development and construction details of a bat house that would meet the needs of our bat friends and would be built in accordance with published standards from BCI so they could be certified as bat Friendly.
BCI Approved Guidelines for Bat House Design and Construction
- Roost chambers must be a minimum of 20 inches tall. Taller is even better.
- The width (side to side) of roost chambers must be at least 14 inches. Greater widths are preferred. Rocket style houses with continuous (360 degree) chambers are an exception. Depending on materials used, bat houses with roost chambers wider than 16 inches may require spacer blocks between partitions.
- Roost partitions must be carefully spaced 3/4 to 1 inch apart (front to back), regardless of the number of chambers. The best crevice size for most North American bats is 3/4 inch. Houses built specifically for larger species (pallid bats and Wagners bonneted bats), with a combination of 3/4 and 1 inch chambers, may be acceptable, provided houses are advertised for said species. Advertising must also state that 1 1/2 inch chambers are more attractive to wasps and other non-target animals, requiring more frequent monitoring.
- Bat houses must possess a suitable landing area. Either a 3 to 6 inch landing area must extend below the entrance (by extending the length of the backboard), or partitions may be recessed 3 to 6 inches, such that bats may land on the inside walls of the bottom of the bat house.
- Interior surfaces and landing areas must have adequate texture to provide footholds for bats. Rough-cut wood may suffice, or surfaces can be mechanically grooved, roughened, or scored (horizontally only) at 1/4 to inch intervals, approximately 1/16 inches deep
Bat houses had to be built as per certain specification and guidelines as listed above that created and published by BCI to become Bat Certified. When we first started building bat houses back in 2010 we had to ship one of each of our 5 model bat house to BCI headquarters in Texas for them to make a visual inspection of each unit, to obtain their approval and certification on each unit. That is how we, along with other builders, became a certified bat house builder from BCI.
When BBY submitted our first 5 bat houses to BCI back in 2010 we took it upon ourselves to incorporate our 4 notch construction design into the basic design that was created by BCI to give our bat houses a greater quality of construction for the bats and our customers.
Since that time we have upgraded our bat house design and went to the 5 notch system to enhance the quality of our construction in each and every one of our models so you can be assured of the highest quality product and high stands of excellence from us with each and every order you place with us at BatsBirdsYard.
The Certification program was instated in 1998 and continued until 2020 when BCI decided to discontinue the program. Without any explanation BCI just dropped their approved builder program in late 2020 without any explanation as to why it was dropped and no indications that the program would be ever be reinstated.
It was a great program for new builders and individuals that were interested in building a bat house that would benefit the bats.
If you have been shopping around for a bat house, you need to be "very careful" that you don't purchase a bat house solely on the price. They most likely will not work for the Bats and you have wasted your time and money. Make sure it is built under a BCI approved program or equal.
Keeping with the original guidelines that were developed by BCI back in 1998, we have based our bat house construction details, size, and 5 notch design fundamental to stay intact as they are today.
The design criteria that was developed back in 1998/2010 has worked for over two decades so we have no intention of changing our design for a system that is working out very well for our Bat friends. There is NO NEED to change a good thing (if it isn't broken don't fix it).
We will continue to build High Quality Cedar Bat Houses that have been approved Bat Friendly by BCI as per their attached Certification letters.
SUPPORT our TROOPS
We donate a portion of our sales to the "USO"
Thank you for taking the time to review our BCI Certification info.
Phil & Diane Brodak
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More Bat Information:
Buy a Bat House | Bat Facts | About Bats | When to Install a Bat House | Bat House Installation Service | Custom Installation | Paint and Stain | Heat Index Chart | Bat House Construction | Bat House Occupancy | Mounting Brackets | Lifetime Warranty | Bat Removal