What is actually a mice infestation and how to get rid of mice in the house? Well, we’ll try to help you out, but you should consider contacting mouse extermination services.
Before engaging in any kind of extermination or control methods, you will need to properly identify the pest population. If you’re hearing noises within the walls, it’s most likely to be related to a mouse infestation.
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Ridding Your Home of Mice
With fall and winter comes the unfortunate presence of unwanted household guests, such as mouse infestation. Whether you live in the country or within city limits, you may be met with a mice infestation that you would like to remedy immediately.
Beyond just being a nuisance, mice can cause a number of problems within your home. From the noise of them running in between your walls at night to finding random holes in your food items, mice are one pest that is not welcomed. The damage they can do to your home and groceries will increase costs for you, which is a major inconvenience. Beyond chewing through your pantry and walls, they also leave droppings throughout your home which can spread infections and disease to your family and pets.
However, getting rid of mice in your home does not happen overnight and takes some effort and commitment, but it can be done. One stat you are going to wish you hadn’t read is that a healthy mouse can produce upwards of 100 offspring per year, which is all the more reason to act now and act fast. There are numerous home traps you can purchase and preventative measures you can take to keep mice out, but you may need to call in a pest control specialist, which is also the most humane way to take care of the critters.
Mice spread diseases
Mice infestations can be heavily troublesome and dangerous to humans. Mice feed on your food sources, and they destroy paper and carton boxes in order to construct their nests. Their urine and faeces are likely to contain viruses and bacteria – salmonella and hantavirus for instance. Therefore, it is necessary to exterminate and remove any mouse infestation.
Pests such as mice and rats can carry a variety of diseases, directly or indirectly. The rodent itself may have parasites that bring the diseases into your home. A virus or a bacterial infection, those diseases affect human body functions and systems (pulmonary function, fever, blood circulatory system). Besides, if the water supply is infected by mice urine can cause serious, even deadly bacterial growth.
Mice can lead to serious home damages too. They gnaw on everything – electrical wiring, piping insulation and wood structural items. Many times mice used attics as their nesting areas. So, you should be aware of the damage to attic insulation and electrical wiring.
Signs of mice infestation
In order to determine your best plan of extermination and before you get started ridding your home of mice, you need to determine where exactly they have made a home in your home. Mice typically do not like to run about in the broad daylight or areas where they can easily be spotted. They prefer to run along the walls or floorboards, so it may be helpful to lay some talcum powder along your interior walls to see where they are making tracks. Check your home for holes in the walls, typically closer to the floor, as well as dirt smudges, droppings, and urine trails. In the event you actually see a mouse, try and remember what he looks like so you can do some research on the variety you are dealing with.
- House mice – typically are greyish in colouring and have longer tails. They are not finicky eaters and can be trapped with the popular cheese and peanut butter options
- Field and wild mice – are lighter in colour and have shorter tails, as well as a larger head, feet, and protruding eyes. These guys are pickier when it comes to food, so you may need to use seeds or oats to lure them into your traps
Control and eliminate the pest
If mice have invaded your home, it is time to control and eliminate them. Prepare yourself, because removal, even ones done by qualified pest control companies, take lots of actions and caution measures.
First of all, you should identify and eliminate entry and feeding points, all possible ones. Food should be kept in glass jars or metal containers, while countertops, sinks and kitchen floors must be kept clean all the time.
How to seal all possible entry points? Do it with concrete or steel. And don’t let any of the cracks, holes or crevices open. Small holes, even those as big as a box of matches are big enough for mice to get in. That’s why you will need to seal any open areas around water pipes, gas lines or dryer vents.
There is a variety of home extermination techniques, from simple traps to well-planned baits. If you are considering catching a mouse with a trap, you need to be aware that a trap can be dangerous for you, your family and even your pets, if it is not placed properly. So, if you want it to be effective, place it right, no matter is it a snap trap or the one with glue included. Those live traps require you to get rid of captured rodents.
Another way of dealing with mice infestation is to use baits. But, as much as traps can be dangerous, baits carry a high risk too. Improper use and placement of baits can affect people, pets, and even wildlife. That is why no one advises homeowners to perform baiting at home by themselves.
Keeping mice out of your home
Keep your doors closed
You may have the habit of keeping your door open, be it the front door, or the garage door. If you keep repeating that behaviour, mice get a golden chance to enter your house. So since you truly want to live peacefully without any intrusion from mice, you need to keep the doors closed – always! No two ways about it!
At night, mice become hyperactive, so keeping your doors open during the night is a big disadvantage! If you are a fan of summer breeze, you may get screen doors installed in your house. That way, you will be able to enjoy the breeze without having to worry about any kind of mice intrusion.
Have the windows sealed
As mice have no trouble climbing, keeping the windows open may prove to be a mistake as well. It is very common for mice to enter houses through windows, so your best bet is to either keep the windows closed, or use window screens.
Screens are prone to damage over time, and torn fabrics and rusty holes are common occurrences. Therefore, in case you have not checked the screens for a while, you need to go ahead and inspect each and everyone very carefully in order to make sure that mice are not entering with the help of any screen hole or tear.
At times, you may find that a certain window does not get shut all the way and that the part between the frame and the window contains a gap. If you spot such a window, have it sealed by using either hardware cloth or steel wool.
Check the foundation
It is quite possible for mice to make an entry using cracks developed in walls, particularly cracks that are close to the doors or windows. Have a good walk all around the house to find out if any hole or crack is noticeable which can be a possible entryway for mice.
If a hole is any larger than 1/4th of an inch, or close to 6.4mm, it is time to have it sealed properly. Note that weak materials are pretty useless when it comes to sealing since mice can easily chew such materials. The most rational thing you can do is use a sturdy material such as hardware cloth, concrete mortar, sheet metal etc.
Mice are truly cunning, and it is very common for mice to enter the house using the garage as the first stop. So be sure to nicely inspect the wall between your garage and the house.
Lock all the vents, chimneys and outlets
Given that a cable hole is large enough for a mouse, it is quite simple for it to enter your house using that hole as the highway. Mice can also enter using holes created for drains and pipes. Vents and chimneys are not immune to mice intrusion either.
Use stainless steel pads
Make use of pads made of stainless steel to stuff tiny holes or gaps around cables as well as pipes, and then use caulk to seal such holes. You can further trim a stainless steel pad to fit an area, and thus, create an abrasive barrier for mice.
There are numerous types of traps on the market today that will help you catch mice, including:
- Conventional snap-traps – these are the most popular and are effective if placed in the right areas and you use the appropriate bait. Once caught, be sure to wear gloves when disposing of. They are very quick and hassle-free, but they do not always kill the mouse immediately.
- Zapper-traps – these lure mice into cages and then administer an electric shock, which usually kills them right away. They are more expensive and require constant battery replacement.
Keep your home clean
While the most obvious way to keep mice out is to maintain a clean and tidy home, but that does not always work.
- Try to cut them off from food sources or attractive nesting spots.
- Always store food and waste in sealable containers.
- If you have pets, be sure to clean their dishes immediately and use elevated food bowls if possible.
- Vacuum and dust on a regular basis.
- Remove any unwanted clutter from rooms, as this may serve as an attractive nesting spot
- Check the exterior of your home for holes.
Humane Ways to Deter Mice
One way to deter mice from moving into your home is to grow mint, as the rodents have a natural aversion to the herb. Also covering cotton balls in peppermint and placing them along the walls and in the corners of your house may deter the mice from coming in and discourage them to leave. You can also use catch-traps, but be sure to dispose of the mice several miles away so they don’t come back!
Hire a mouse exterminator
If you look for a qualified mouse exterminator, they will advise you to take action at the first sign of mice infestation. Experts say that the mice population grows rapidly, and they are extremely difficult to eradicate. Therefore, the best thing to do is to target the infestation while their colonies are still small.
Even cleaning after a mice infestation and removal needs to be performed precisely, that’s one more reason to call exterminators.
Pest control services are the most qualified ones to perform the most efficient mice extermination methods. To deal with removal, you should contact local pest removal companies to arrange an inspection and consultation the very moment you determine the problem.