As we move from summer to fall, mice become more active in seeking new sources of food, water and shelter. They need an opening no larger than a dime to gain entry. Once they have arrived, your problems can very quickly get out of control. Preventing entry is ideal, but in case you get some………….
HOW DO THEY GET IN
They are patient and wait for just the right opportunity. Maybe an outside door has been left open (often for just seconds). Maybe a box of clothes or the dog’s open food bag has provided a free ride inside for the little critters. Holes and cracks in your foundation and outer walls are prime entry points. So are doorways, areas around windows, chimneys, roof vents and wherever pipes or wires enter your home. Your takeaway for action – caulk up any openings that you have.
HOW DO I KNOW IF I HAVE THEM
• You see droppings (black in color and about ¼ long)
• You hear noise in the walls or attic (mostly at night)
• You see chewed wires or cabling
• Unexplained gnaw marks on carpet, drapes, furniture or baseboards
• Chewed on food product packaging in your pantry
THEY ARE SO CUTE AND SMALL, WHY SHOULD I BE SO CONCERNED
• They can make you very sick. They can spread disease through their urine, droppings, saliva and nesting material.
• They multiply very quickly. They breed year round with one female having 5-10 litters a year with 6-8 babies per litter.
• They can easily eat through packages of grains, cereal or cracker boxes. They eat 15-20 times a day and usually make their nest near a food source (kitchen or pantry)
HOW TO GET RID OF THEM
The most common DIY method is snap traps. Traps should be set and placed in areas where you have detected mice. Peanut butter has become the new bait of choice. Check the traps daily, release the dead mice into a plastic bag and put it in the outside garbage.
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