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University of Florida Bat House
Ranked #4 of 65 things to do in Gainesville
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: The University of Florida Bat Barn and Bat House are the world's largest occupied bat houses, with an estimated population of more than 350,000. The structures are located on the north side of Museum Road between Village Drive and Radio Road across from Lake Alice on the UF campus. Parking is available in a lot just west of the bat houses near Radio Road. A sidewalk leads from the parking lot to the observation area. A UF parking decal is required Monday-Friday from 7:30 a.m to 4:30 p.m. Parking is free after 4:30 p.m. weekdays, and on weekends and state holidays. The bats normally emerge during a 15- to 20-minute period after sunset, before total darkness on calm, warm evenings when temperatures are above 65 F. Bats may swoop near those observing the emergence to eat insects attracted to the carbon dioxide in human breath, however they will not attack or harm people when left alone. High winds, heavy rain or cold temperatures will keep the bats in the house for the evening. On warm winter evenings, the bats may come out for a drink of water at the lake and exercise; however they can eat only when bugs are flying.
Tampa, Florida
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed March 14, 2013

This was an amazing experience!! About 20 mins before sunset, you will see a few bats fly out of the house and barn. Then the number of bats begins to multiply quickly as hundreds of bats are flying out and around. We even saw a Red Shoulder Hawk swoop down 3 times and catch his dinner (baby bat) as the bats were busliy munching on insects. The informational sign says about 300,000 bats live here. I can beleive it. You might want to bring bug spray and an umbrella. The sign says that the bats urinate and poop while flying.

Visited March 2013
2 Thank burgpartyof5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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325 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Gainesville, Florida, United States
Level 5 Contributor
63 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Nightlife in a College Town”
Reviewed February 22, 2013

Ha--you probably thought this review was about bar-hopping! No, it's about the nightly flight of the bats, definitely worth seeing if you are near campus at dusk. These little guys help combat the mosquitoes and other pests nearby.

Visited January 2013
1 Thank KTUFL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orlando, Florida
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Simple yet fascinating”
Reviewed January 25, 2013

Must see. It is so fascinating to see the bats in the evening. When they come out for feeding, you might feel they were trained to do this. In the sense its awesome to see the discipline there. The location is pretty next to the lake and the vegetable gardens.

Visited January 2013
2 Thank NamzyIno
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
North Florida
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“A must-see in the summer”
Reviewed January 20, 2013

Kind of hot in the summer but I don't think bats are very active in winter time. The bats are usually pretty reliable and show up when expected (sundown). Fun free community activity for families.

Visited June 2012
Thank HealthyMom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gainesville, Florida, United States
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Bats everywhere!”
Reviewed January 5, 2013

I can't remember the last time I came here, but the first time I heard about the bat house, It excited me very much to see bats flying back and forth from the bat house. The swarm didn't start till noon. It was pretty much exciting to see the whole sky swarming with bats. Every day, I pass by this place, seeing a lot of people be amazed by the bat house. It's awesome.

1 Thank Tabitha J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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