Little Brown Bat


Actual Size: 3-4” total length with a wingspan of 8-11”

Characteristics: Small mouse-eared bats with a variety of fur colors possible and usually lighter color belly fur. They have a short snout and females are larger than males.

Habitat: Will choose caves, trees, rocks, woodpiles, and buildings as roost sites, making it potentially dangerous for suburban homes.


  • Have a lifespan of about 6.5 years.
  • Nocturnal creatures that forage for insect prey at night.
  • During the day, they roost in hollow trees or buildings.

Little Brown Bats in Eastern Tennessee

True to their name, little brown bats weigh less than half an ounce and are one of the smallest types of bats. They are found in many places but are more typically found in the northern U.S.  They are not territorial and tend to live in colonies of thousands of bats. These colonies congregate at nesting sites (known as roosts). These bats use a system called echolocation to seek out their insect prey.

Little Brown Bat Habitat

Little brown bats are found throughout the nation, but mostly in the northern states. There is a smaller population in southern states. They can migrate hundreds of miles to get from summer habitats to their hibernacula, which is a roost occupied in the winter months. They tend to choose caves, trees, rocks, woodpiles, and buildings as roost sites, making it potentially dangerous for suburban homes.

Little Brown Bat Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

Little brown bats feed on insects. They use a process called echolocation, which is similar to the sonar used on ships, to determine the location and size of their prey. These bats need to eat at least half their body weight in insects to prevent becoming malnourished. Little brown bats are nocturnal and their peak activity is a few hours after dusk. Little brown bats are known to roost in buildings, making it important to know how to prevent them. Bats can spread diseases including rabies. They aren’t typically aggressive but will bite if handled.

Little Brown Bat Prevention

To keep little brown bats out of your home, it’s important to know how to seal your property. Replace old and ill-fitting screens or shillings, and thoroughly inspect your property for other openings. Bats are smaller than you think and can fit into the tiniest of openings. Also, consider stuffing steel or copper wire mesh around pipes entering your home. This can prevent entry. If you notice a bat has made its way into your building, never approach it or attempt to handle it yourself. Always call a professional pest control company.