We often are asked why cleaning up bat guano is so dangerous. This question usually follows someone telling us they have been sweeping up bat guano for months and us telling them to stop.
Bat guano cleanup is something we have many, many years of experience in. We have cleaned up bat guano in Kentucky and the other 47 continental United States. Bat guano cleanup is very different in Kentucky, however, as it is even more dangerous.
The Soil of Kentucky and Histoplasmosis
A majority of people that are exposed to histoplasmosis may develop a few flu or cold like symptoms, get over it quickly, and never think twice about what they were actually sick with. This is what makes this disease so dangerous. You may never know that it is lying dormant in your body…
Ocular histoplasmosis is a condition that can develop immediately or years (sometimes many years) after being exposed to histoplasmosis. Often, people don’t even know they have been exposed to histoplasmosis until they are diagnosed with ocular histoplasmosis some time later.
Ocular Histoplasmosis Can Cause Blindness
So you wake up on a bright, sunny Saturday morning. Maybe you stayed out a little too late the night before so you think nothing of the fact that the vision in one of your eyes is a little blurry. As the days pass though, you notice that your vision is not clearing up. You then start to develop some headaches which you attribute to the blurry vision so you make an appointment with your eye doctor.
This trip to the eye doctor doesn’t go as you had hoped. It’s here that they break the news to you that you are at great risk to lose the vision in your eye due to ocular histoplasmosis…
This is a great video made by the Retina Associates of Kentucky and Dr. Rick D. Isernhagen, MD that discusses the signs and symptoms of ocular histoplasmosis and the latest treatment options. They also discuss why ocular histoplasmosis is more prevalent in Kentucky.
Bat Guano Carries Histoplasmosis in Kentucky
The Ohio River Valley and the surrounding areas are beautiful places filled with an abundance of waterways, lush vegetation, and a wide assortment of wildlife. Of the many types of wildlife you will find in this area, there are a lot of bats and birds. Both of which can carry histoplasmosis and transmit it to the soil through their droppings.
Kentucky also boasts some amazingly nitrogen rich soil. It is amazing for growing crops but also has the ability to hold the histoplasmosis virus in the soil much longer than other types of soil. When the soil is disturbed by any means, it then releases the histoplasma capsulatum spores (the fungus that grows in the bat guano) into the air. These spores, once inhaled, cause the histoplasmosis virus. Now imagine those spores are released close to an air intake for a building, such as an HVAC system. These fungal spores are now loose in your entire building.
If there is a bat infestation in your building, there is a guaranteed accumulation of bat guano. There are proven safe methods to cleaning up this mess. At Get Bats Out we follow strict safety procedures not only to keep us safe, but to keep you safe as well. The last thing you need is to track bat guano and histoplasmosis all over the building. Don’t attempt this alone. Call in the experts.
Your local bat removal expert,