A colony of bats moved into the Volusia County Health Department's New Smyrna clinic a few weeks ago, sending some health department workers out of their office.
Late last week, health department workers noticed a strange odor in the clinic area.
"Some of our employees starting hearing things up in the attic, and then we actually had a couple of bats somehow fell out of the attic into our actual clinic area, and were laying there," said Environmental Manager Paul Minshew.
That's when they found almost a hundred bats nesting above them. A half a dozen employees are now working in the Daytona Beach offices, while parts of the New Smyrna clinic are shut down.
The health department called in local company, Friends of Bats, to help clear them out.
"Bats are known carriers of rabies, and also a fungal disease called Histoplasmosis which can be found potentially in the guano," Minshew said.
Minshew told us, no one was bitten and the workers weren't exposed to any guano, so they didn't test the bats. Friends of Bats is using green mesh nets to humanely remove the mammals. The nets act as one-way exits out of the attic, after the bats leave at night to feed.
"When they come back in the early morning, because they have to crawl, they can't actually find the opening to get back into the attic."
All of the unwelcome creatures should be evicted from their new home by Wednesday. The health department is planning to hire a crew to clean to guano and replace any damaged tiles, before they reopen the closed area of the clinic.