Bat infestation in Catawba County American Legion

- Forget Batman, it's real live bats that have taken over an American Legion in Catawba County.

At the corner of First Avenue and Klutz in Maiden sits American Legion Post 240. It's quiet during the week, but quite the party on Saturday nights with weekly dancing.

"It's a nice crowd. There is no fighting, no drinking and we enjoy ourselves," said Dorothy Hudson, who is a neighbor to the American Legion building.

Now, there may be unwanted guests living inside. Officials with the Catawba County Health Department say someone left an anonymous tip, notifying them of a bat infestation.

"I have never seen any bats flying around. If there would be, I wouldn't be going," said Hudson.

There is not a sign on the door letting people know that there may be bats inside the American Legion. Officials from the health department say they don't have jurisdiction over the building because it is a private club.

Neighbors feel confident that the owners will be able to get rid of the bats quickly.

"The bathrooms are clean, and they turns the lights on when the band is done playing and I can see everything is clean," said Hudson.

It could be quite some time before the bats leave their new home. North Carolina Fish & Wildlife experts say now through the end of July marks pup season, when females have their babies They discourage homeowners from closing holes or installing bat eviction devices until the season is over.

"If I see one in the dance hall I would leave out," said Hudson.

For now, the health department is working with the American Legion on the best way to get rid of the bats. So far, no bat related illness has been reported to officials at the health department.

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