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How to Get Rid of Mice

Posted By Samantha Roberts On July 26, 2010 @ 5:30 pm In Pest Control | Comments Disabled

Even the cleanest, best maintained house can be invaded by mice. These furry, four-footed visitors need only to find an entryway with a source of food on the other side to make your home their home.

If you’re hearing furtive scampering sounds in the middle of the night, if food looks a little nibbled in the morning or collections of small dark droppings are beginning to turn up at the back of cupboards, chances are you’ve got a few non-paying guests staying with you. It’s time to learn how to get rid of mice!

First Steps

Before actually trying to catch the mice in your home you should take a couple of steps towards making your home less attractive to these diminutive rodents.

Mice want food. By ensuring you always store food in the fridge or in airtight containers you’re going a long way towards creating an environment that will send mice packing.

Blocking holes and cracks and any other entry points that mice can exploit to gain access to your home will prevent a mouse infestation taking hold in the first place.

Note: blocking holes with material like rags and newspapers is pointless, mice will just gnaw through them. Use steel wool instead.

Different Mouse Measures

There are a number of different approaches to getting rid of mice once they’ve settled in your home. You could call in a professional exterminator, of course, but if you want to have a go yourself, consider the methods outlined below.

Cats

A cat can be useful for preventing a mouse infestation from taking hold. If there are already significant numbers of mice in your home, though, a cat alone will not be able to control them.

Using a cat as an anti-mouse measure also has its disadvantages. Cats kill for pleasure and may spend hours torturing a mouse before putting it out of its misery – not a pleasant sight for the kiddies. If a cat does eventually eat part of the mouse, it may ingest parasites and mouse poison.

Poison

Poison can be an effective way to get rid of mice, but it too has disadvantages. It is a slow and painful death and mice may either stagger out of their nests into plain sight, convulsing before horrified children, or they may die beneath floorboards or behind walls and create an appalling smell.

If you do choose t use poison, set it out in “bait stations”. These enclosed plastic containers will reduce the risk that the poison will be eaten by children or pets. Place bait stations against walls, near entrances to nests, near food sources, along mouse “pathways” and in any other place that shows signs of mouse activity. Follow manufacturer’s instructions.

Ultrasonic Devices

One of the more humane methods of chasing mice away from your home is to use an ultrasonic generator. These devices emit very high frequency sound waves that mice can’t stand – don’t worry about your pets, the frequencies are so high even dogs can’t hear them.

Ultrasonic devices work best in single rooms as the sound waves they generate can’t readily penetrate walls and doors.

Traditional Mousetraps

A tried and trusted favourite since their invention at the end of the 1800s, spring-loaded mousetraps are cheap and effective.

Note: if you use one of these traps, peanut butter or chocolate are more effective baits than cheese.

Unfortunately, traditional mousetraps often only maim the poor mouse and cause it to suffer through the night until you check the trap in the morning. And of course then you have to face the unpleasant task of finishing off the job yourself. Ugh!

Glue Mats

Basically a sheet of adhesive onto which the unsuspecting mouse steps, whereupon it finds itself stuck fast and spends the night hours in a futile struggle to free itself before collapsing of exhaustion. An unnecessarily cruel means of eliminating mice, glue mats, like traditional mousetraps, often require the services of the householder to send the rodent to its final resting place.

Humane Mousetraps

For a more humane and painless method of dealing with mice, try a humane mouse trap. Like tiny prisons, these devices simply entrap the mouse without injuring it. All you have to do then is carry the closed trap away from your house and release the mouse.

Note: don’t just release the mouse in your garden as it will inevitably find its way back into your home.

Your Choice

The method you use to get rid of mice is up to you, but it is worth remembering that, while our first reaction to the sight of a mouse or its droppings may be one of horror and disgust, mice, in small numbers, are relatively innocuous pests and should, perhaps, be given the opportunity to relocate before being sentenced to a summary (and painful) execution.

To see one type of humane mousetrap in action have a look at this video.


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