Got house mice. Suddenly droppings everywhere in the kitchen, despite keeping everything very clean, no food left out, all dishes washed and put away, no pet food avail, etc.
Keep in mind that I don’t hate any animals, but mice carry hantaviris, rabies, fleas and other health risks, and I just can’t have them pooping in and around my food area.
Got some packs of mouse poison, scattered them under the sink. Next morning, cool, one whole pack was empty. Great. They will die, no more disease-carrying rodents in my kitchen.
For the next 2 days, no droppings, great, I assume they’ve all gone to that great mousehouse in the sky. Then this morning, more droppings on the counters. They have ignored all the rest of the mouse-poison packets, and are back on the counters, stove, etc leaving their foul disease-ridden droppings everywhere. But will not eat the bait.
Why aren’t they remaining mice not eating the bait?
It’s possible they’re finding something more interesting to eat. At this time of year, too, the prime job is finding someplace warm to winter. Be patient. Get some mechanical traps, too. If you have pets, devise some way to keep them out of the traps. In some areas, you may be be dealing with hundreds of mice in search of warm winter quarters. That may seem gacky, but hundreds of dead mice are better than hundreds of live mice. If you have a cat, consider scattering used cat litter around the foundation. Ferret litter is better yet.
Wolfsbane- my parents seem to get a small infestation whenever a neighbor moves or there is construction in the area.
Like AskNott recommended get some mechanical traps, the best bait- secondhand from the employer of a pest control guy- is peanut butter with onion mixed in-
Another vote for the mousetrap. Amazingly, they work better than the poison. The poison will kill them if they eat enough, but they learn not to eat it. For some reason learning about the traps seems beyond their mousy little brains. I speculate that they had to evolve the ability to learn about toxic food, but naturally occuring mousetraps are too rare to worry about.
The best bait is crushed peanut M&M’s. I used them once in desperation, and they do work. Sticky traps(change their positions daily) are also recommended. Get yourself a can of that pressurized, expanding foam insulation[it’s normally used around window installations] and go over the kitchen carefully and seal up every crack, slit, hole etc. These little bastards can insinuate themselves through THE smallest openings. Years ago I found a trap that was a squared off plastic tube with a slight V-bend in it. You baited the far end, placed it on the floor and when the mouse entered, it tipped forward and closed the little plastic cover on the end. Single use, however, but then you don’t have to see them-unless you REALLY want to. Downside though, haven’t been able to find them again, nor do I remember the name. In an old home remedy book, published in the late 1800’s, they gave a recipe to get rid of mice: Mix half cocoa powder and half cement. Put out little saucers of it, with a saucer of water. The cocoa attracts them, and then the cement and water petrify[literally] them. THAT I’d pay to see. Good luck.
Another vote for the mechanical traps.
Over the years, mice and rats have become partially immune to the effects of warfrin poison, a common componant. Might explain why you still have mice.
Also, they’re pretty smart. Or maybe new, smarter mice have moved in at the deaths of the others.
At least they’re more managable than cockroaches.
Oreo Cream Filling.
BTW some mechanical traps are worthless. Victor and oreo cream filling has always worked for me.
We had three mice get into our house two winters ago. We found that although less humane than other traps, the sticky traps worked the best and we were able to catch (and subsequently kill) two of the mice that way.
As mentioned above, that sealing foam is great for closing up the cracks where the mice sneak in and I can testify to that as the third mouse died trying to chew his way through the foam to get back out of the crack he sneaked in from (it was our garage).
We had mice, and the mechanical traps worked OK, using peanut butter. I drew a little pair of mickey ears on a trap every time it got a kill, like a WWII fighter ace. The mice were still around though.
Finally we got a couple of kittens, and the mouse problem was no more.
Cats with claws are great for getting rid of mice.
Steel wool makes an excellent temporary plug for mouseholes. The little vermin can squeeze in through a space as small as a quarter of an inch. The previously mentioned expanding urethane foam is my permanent plugging solution, much easier than cement.
I find the Victor traps with peanut butter to be most effective; I tie a short length of string to the trigger and smear the peanut butter on the knot. Before I had done that, once one of the little bastards managed to lick the bait off the trigger without activaing the trap. A light touch on the mechanism works best.
See thread, then go buy a couple of these.
Also remember that you just think they’re gone. Keep out your traps/poison/whatever until there’s no sign of them any longer.
If you’re an animal type, get a big paper bag put some food in the bottom & put the bag near a stair case or something so they can jump in but not jump out. Then you can take them somewhere.
If not the animal type, get Victor Mice catch sticky thingys, about $4.50 a pair, you can release these mice from it with a pencil & oil.
Frankly, I work for two SPCAs & these mice in my opinion offer no environmental benefit at all, so I would get rid of them.
They are probably stockpiling the poison to nest with it. Long after I had killed all my mice, I would find piles of poison in shoes and drawers.
I second chique’s suggestion. They are the only traps that ever worked for me, and they took care of the problem quite quickly.
Or you could try the Rat Zapper:
We have had mechanical mousetraps out for about a month baited with various things (peanut butter, chocolate raisins etc) and only ever caught one mouse (and a small one at that).
This week we got a ‘tipping tube’ humane trap and caught two mice in 1 day (baited with peanut butter).
The sensitivity levels of these are a lot better than the mechanical traps.
Last night I had a dream that I had mice. They would not die. I was hitting one in the head with a hammer, and it still lived. Little spatters of blood were on the floor, but it wouldn’t die.
I saw a Medical Detectives and they had a story on the Hanta virus outbreak on the Navajo reservation that happened a while ago. And I saw something on Spike TV where there was video of about 250 mice infesting an abandoned apartment. But I think that the title of this thread was the seed of my dream.
Rodent poison doesn’t kill them straightaway like … well, like you think it would. They eat it, then they BLEED to death, through their lung tissues, etc. And mice and rats are tough buggers. New York magazine had an article a few years back that was written by an exterminator. He was called to a Chinatown restaurant b/c or a rat problem. They had laid poison out, no luck. The guy goes to an upstairs room where they’re supposedly the worst, and discovers giant rats (that’s how we grow 'em here), heavily poisoned, staggering around, bleeding from the mouth, but refusing to die. He had to go back downstairs, ask for a kitchen knife, and then go finish them off himself.
Get a yorkshire terrier. Yeah, they’re tiny little rats themselves, but damn good mousers, from what I understand.
I used a sticky trap one night, got all of them & put it outside until I could figure out what to do with it. Went out an hour later & it appeared the local birds ate em.