Mouse-proof food storage needed (need answer fast)

So, our trailer has a mouse infestation. We lay out sticky traps and they catch a mouse on occasion, but they never go away, and they get into our food if we’re not very, very careful.

We use our microwave to store our bread and some snacks, a plastic barrel to store more food, and also a large plastic storage container.

Tonight I went to get some cookies out of the plastic storage container and a mouse jumped out of a newly-bitten hole in the side.

Any suggestions on something I can buy to replace it, that’s relatively affordable? I’m thinking something metallic.

Metal bread boxes? You could probably go to A thrift store and get a bread box and/or many cookie and popcorn tins.

Also don’t be afraid to put everything that will fit in your fridge.

Thrift stores pretty much give away those metal cookie and popcorn canisters. Glass jars will work too.

A mouse chewed into a plastic barrel? I wouldn’t have expected them to know or smell that food was in it. I keep my bags of dog food in a plastic barrel. So far no holes.

Cheapest thing I can think of would be a metal wastebasket. here’s one. Use a board or piece of plywood as a lid. A brick on top to weight it down. I’d probably pull out my jigsaw and cut a round lid from plywood. But it’s not essential. Any scrap piece that covers the top will work.

Or even easier. Flip the can upside down. Just make sure you use a couple bricks to weight it down. So nothing can get underneath it.

If a mouse chews through Galvanized Metal it’s time to move. :wink:

You might want to move on from sticky traps to other options. The spring kind, maybe. Is a cat an option for you? Terrier?

huh, I didn’t know they still made metal garbage cans with metal lids. this is perfect for mouse proof storage. even better than the other one that I linked because it has a lid.

I haven’t seen a metal one like this since I was a kid. But apparently they are still made and sold.

Decorative holiday tins are probably super cheap right now.

First, you need a bucket, plastic will do just fine. It has to be taller than the wee mousie is. Fill the bucket with water so that the rotten little rodent has to swim, but can’t reach the rim with it’s little pink paws.

Cover the surface of the water with sunflower seeds. Make a ramp from a paint stirrer or piece of 2x4.

Scatter a few sunflower seeds on the ramp, especially at the top and sploosh! mousie is sleeping with the fishes. They.never.learn. Sploosh, sploosh, sploosh.

If it isn’t airtight, it will leak at least a few odor molecules, and that might be enough for a mouse. Anyway, I don’t think mice need to smell food; they have to chew things (they’re rodents), and I think sometimes they just chew random things that MIGHT contain food and are pleasantly surprised, or not. At least that was my explanation when I found a mouse had chewed into a sealed foil packet of freeze-dried fruit.

As for storage, the best mouse-proof food storage is the refrigerator; even if they get in they’ll die of hypothermia (evil grin). Next best is the metal tins others have already mentioned; at this time of year stores should be dumping tins of cookies, pretzels, popcorn etc. at post-Christmas sale prices. Give away the contents if you don’t want to eat it.

Lunch containers work for me

Get this kind of mouse trap.

They work much better than anything else, and they’re far more humane than sticky traps.

This. Cookie tins are great.

I second getting everything you can into the fridge. A bag of sugar goes into a gallon ziploc plastic bag and goes into the freezer. Brown sugar goes into a ziploc baggie, with a heel of bread, and into the fridge. Noodles and rice pasta jars. ALL condiments go into the fridge. Cookies and crackers and such go into cookie tins. Bread goes into the freezer. You want totally clean surfaces, then scrub everything down.

Also, put all dry pet food into metal or glass containers. Buy one of those giant metal tins of popcorn, empty it out, and use it. Works great.

DO NOT make the mistake I did and store food in the oven. I assumed an oven would be a closed system, what with having to deal with insulation, temperature control, etc. Not so, my friend. I had wrapped up several recipes of Christmas cookies, and put them into the cooled oven. When I went to retrieve them 2 days later, I was greeted with additional “toppings” on my baked goods, and mouse teeth marks everywhere. Everything was ruined, and I was grossed out. When I think of what I spent on all those ingredients, I wanted to wring me some little mouse necks.

Two recommendations for catching mice: The plastic snap traps, with the recessed bait cup. Makes them take a longer time to get at the bait, and then, Clancy lowered the boom. Very satisfying. Feeling particularly evil? Mix cocoa powder and dry cement, 50/50. Also provide a bottle cap filled with water. The mouse eats some of the dry stuff, drinks, and, presto/change-o, you have a lovely rodent statue. As long as it doesn’t go off and die in your walls, you’re golden.

I’ve mentioned this a few times before: peppermint oil. Get a small bottle of peppermint oil (not peppermint extract - the oil is much more intense). Sprinkle a few drop in every room. You want it to be strong enough that you can smell it. Reapply every few days for about a month.

Mice apparently have a much stronger sense of smell than people. If there’s enough peppermint odor for you to smell it, it’s too intense for them to be around. They’ll evacuate your house for somewhere else.

I was over run with mice and rats back in Aug, Sept, and Oct. Caught nearly ten in sticky traps and 3 in spring traps.

I finally called an exterminator. He went to the source (the attic) and put out poison bait. He said there were obvious trails in the insulation where the rodents were traveling around. He put some bait around the exterior of the house too.

So far I haven’t seen or heard a rodent since. Getting a pro’s help was worth every dollar I paid. The pros can get high strength bait that isn’t sold to consumers at retail.

I still keep the dog food in plastic containers. Pancake and cornbread mixes are inside tupperware in my cabinet. Anything that might attack rodents is inside a container.

I suggest a few cats.

Well, thar’s yer probl’m. Yer keepin’ the entities that might control them varmints sealed all up! :stuck_out_tongue:

But on a serious note: tightly-sealed metal tins are the way to go. Works for me. :slight_smile:

Growing up in rural Minnesota in the 1950s, I heard about a farmer who used this technique to get rid of rats.

Great username/post combo!