When there is an animal in your chimney, it isn't always easy to tell what kind of animal it may be. Depending upon what kind of animal it is, there will be different ways you will have to approach each situation. The two most common animals that can be found in your chimney are either bats or birds.
The most common kind of bird found in your chimney is the bird called the Chimney swift. Chimney swifts are a protected under the Federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and it is a violation of U.S. law to hunt, capture, injure, remove, or relocate any migratory bird. This means that removing or destroying nests with eggs or young hatchlings is a federal offense also punishable by law and because of this, no certified or reputable chimney sweep or wildlife control specialist will remove a chimney swift nest until the birds have left.
Chimney swifts primarily feed on flying insects or airborne spiders accounting for up to 95% of their diet. It is a medium sized, sooty-gray bird with long wings and short legs. Like all swifts, Chimney swifts are incapable of perching, and can only cling vertically on surfaces. In the wild, most Chimney swifts would roost in hollow trees but with more and more trees being cut down every year, their habitat is on a decline. The swifts quickly adapted and moved their new roosts to the inside of chimneys.
There are a couple things one can do to try and help tell the difference between bats and birds. The first is to listen. Chimney swifts are not noisy for very long. Babies start making a bunch of noise around two weeks old and start leaving the nest when they are about 30 days old. So by the time you are hearing this noise consistently, it may not last very long. So if you are hearing a lot of noise, it is most likely the chimney swifts, otherwise you have a bunch of bats in there!
The other thing you can do to try and help tell the difference is set up a night watch. Most people see bats fly out of their homes in the evening, which is the normal, because bats are getting ready to eat for the night. If you are seeing something fly into the chimney in the evening, this is more than likely a bird going to the nest for the night.
So what should you do? Contact a wildlife control specialist or a bat removal company like us. We will come out and assess the situation and see what is going on. If it is Chimney swifts in your chimney, there is not much that can be done until the eggs are hatched and the birds leave in the fall for their new winter home. The good news is, if it is Chimney swifts, they are not noisy for very long and will soon be on their way. If the noise you are hearing is bats, you have the right people on the job because Nice Bats will be able to take care and remove the bats out of the chimney with their nice and friendly bat removal services.
Whether it is birds or bats, you don't want either of them in your chimney. Have a chimney cap installed once the bats or birds are gone to prevent them from moving back in next year. Chimney caps are also another easy thing that can help with preventing debris, excess moisture, and downward drafts. NiceBats can install the chimney cap for you if you would like one! Give us a call if you are hearing noises in your chimney, we would love to help you out. We offer free inspections and estimates!