Mice will get into a building and start creating nests, causing damage, contaminating food and spreading disease. This is why it’s important to get rid of an infestation as soon as you notice it. However, many homeowners do not know that much about mice and their behavior, so an infestation usually gets out of hand before it is addressed. In this article, we hope to clear up some of the confusion and help homeowners act in a timely manner.
How Do You Know if There Is a Mouse Infestation in Your Home?
Besides the most obvious signs that you have an infestation in your home (seeing an actual mouse) there are several others that are good indicators:
- Gnaw marks and holes in your insulation, walls, piled papers and stored food
- Droppings that look like black rice
- Tiny mouse hairs
- Noticeable pathways where dirt and dust has been swept clean
- Grease marks along the floor and walls
Is It a Mouse or a Rat?
Sometimes you might confuse a mouse with a rat or vice versa. One of the most significant indicators on whether you are dealing with a mouse or a rat is the size of the pest. Rats are much larger than mice reaching up to 16 inches in length, while mice can only reach about 7.5 inches.
How Do You Set up a Mouse Trap?
You want to set most mouse traps in areas where mice are likely to travel. Since they are not the bravest of creatures, they will avoid open spaces and prefer to travel along the walls. Their nests will also be located near food, water and sources of warmth, in areas such as the back of the fridge. The trap should be placed near a wall, with the bait perpendicular to the wall, preferably in a dark, secluded spot – under furniture or appliances.
What Do I Do if My Traps Are Not Working?
There are several reasons why a trap might not be working. One – you are not using the right bait. Make sure that you use high-calorie food such as peanut butter or chocolate. Two – do not over bait. Putting too much bait on the trap allows the mouse to steal it. Just a pea-sized amount will be enough. Three – make sure that you use gloves when setting up the trap. Mice can smell your scent on the trap/bait if you do not use gloves, and it will scare them away.
How Fast Do Mice Reproduce?
Mice colonies can grow very quickly. A female mouse will be able to reproduce once it is a few weeks old, and it will give birth to around 60 mice every year. Left unattended, an infestation will grow exponentially, and soon enough, traps will no longer be an effective control method. It is at that point that you will need to hire a professional to take care of the mice. If you currently need help with a mouse infestation yourself, contact us right away.