Getting Rid of Mice

A few days back we moved into a townhouse and discovered mice droppings in the kitchen cabinets. I am having sleepless nights, as I have a five year old and an infant daughter. We have put glue traps inside the kitchen cabinets and in the bathrooms. But much to my horror today I found droppings in my daughter's (upstairs) bedroom.

The glue traps have been in place for the past 6 days but with no success till now. I haven't seen the mice but I keep finding the droppings. Can anyone please suggest what I can do! I saw some products on the internet like shake them (powder - has fox urine) or ultra sonic devices, rat zappers. It's so confusing. I am willing to try all of them as I need these critters out of my house. Any kind of advice will be highly appreciated.

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Rachna from CA

Answers:

Warning About Poison

Just a warning about the poison pellets. My neighbor bought a house that was not occupied for awhile. There was a problem with mice. So before she moved in, she used the poison pellets. It took care of the problem. But she also found some of the pellets hidden throughout her house. Apparently mice hide some of their food for safe keeping. She had to thoroughly check her house before she moved since she did have some pets.

Also, sometimes the mice will die in the walls. The odor is horrible. I was told to put out tall containers, with straight sides, of water since the poisoned mice are very thirsty and seek water. They can get in but can't get out and drown. Never tried it but makes sense. It won't be pleasant thing to clean up but if it works, it may be worth it. That would be better than having them die in the walls of your house.

By mkymlp

RAMIK BARS

The best thing for killing rodents (mice, or rats) is to go to a farm store and buy a product called 'RAMIK BARS'. You break up these bars and put them around the house, in the basement, attic, etc. The rodents eat this stuff and then they dehydrate. There is no smell at all, because these bars dry their body out.

If, or when you find a dead rodent, it will be flat as a pancake with no odor to it at all! Just be sure to put where your pets can't get to them, as they are poisonous. I have been using these bars every fall for the last 10 years or so when the weather starts getting cool, and I haven't seen a trace of a rodent since.

By sjackie2000

Wear Gloves

Make sure you are wearing gloves when setting any kind of trap. Your body odor will get on the trap and warn away the mouse. A pest exterminator told me this.

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By elpasolady

Peanut Butter

We had field mice several years ago. We set out a few traps filled with peanut butter. Within a few hours, we caught several mice. We left one mouse in the trap for about a day and the rest seemed to disappear. It seems they "got the message".

By Carol D

A Safer Way

I have pets too and found a safer way to distribute the poison is to buy the block or large tablet type and, using a hole saw attachment on a drill, make a small hole in the plastic lid of an old peanut butter jar. Put the bait in the jar and screw the lid on. Jam the jars up high or behind appliances so the mice can take the bait but not pull it out or move the jars. Check regularly to make sure the bait hasn't been nibbled down small enough for them to pull it out of the hole - replace with a new one when they get small.

Regards

By Jo

Fill Holes

The most important thing is to inspect your house for holes. They can get into the smallest holes. I had them when I lived in a mobile home many years ago and I found some holes under the sink that weren't sealed. After I filled them I had no more mice. I haven't had the problem in my house but I have had them in my garage. We live trapped them and released them in a wooded area. It was easy and I don't believe in murdering animals or having them suffer a slow death. I put peanut butter in the trap.

By Vic

My Experience

I was beyond horrified to find I had the same problem last summer. I found 3 little black droppings in the bathroom and began inspecting, only to find there were gaps about the size of a nickel along my baseboards in the bedroom closet and living room. Apparently, they'd left a ground floor neighbor's apartment and made their way up inside the walls. I finally saw one when my cat sat in front of the kitchen refrigerator so long, that I finally moved it and out came this squealing little mouse. It screamed and so did I.

I went to war and found out that they can live on the tiniest crumb. You may think there's no food in your kitchen, but even the tiniest crumb missed when sweeping the floor will be a full dinner for them. Any fruit or bread left on top of the counter, pet food left out, anything is a meal for them. They'd been collecting pet food crumbs and storing them behind the refrigerator.

That said, this is what has been working for me: I bought several bags of level 4 or 5 steel wool, very coarse (lower levels are too fine for excluding rodents), various sizes of steel plates, and expanding foam sealant. I then took a flashlight and crawled around throughout my entire apartment, checking every room, every baseboard, every closet, everything, and found every small crack or crevice that I could fit a pencil eraser through. I then used metal cutters to cut the steel wool into small bunches and shoved it into the cracks and used the foam sealant to cement it into place.

When I say I went everywhere, I mean everywhere. I pulled my stove from the wall, and used sheet metal to cover the hole in the wall where the stove line goes into the wall. I went underneath all of the kitchen cabinets, and if the hole was big, I nailed sheet metal or steel plates over the hole and plugged any smaller openings with steel wool. Before plugging the holes, I dropped the rat poison packets into the holes, as it's impossible for our pets or children to get back there.

I caulked the top of the kitchen counter, where small gaps had developed, and pulled the refrigerator out to make sure there were no openings behind it. I also found that there are often hidden openings beneath the face front of lower level cabinets. When you look at the cabinet, the door appears to be flush with the cabinet floor behind it. However, if you shut the door and crouching down, run your fingers beneath it, you'll often find an opening that runs underneath the cabinet floor. Mice can climb up the inside of walls and use this opening to make their way into the kitchen at night. That's one of the ways it made its way into my kitchen and it was how it exited the day I saw it. These are all now stuffed and packed tight with super coarse steel wool.

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I sweep and mop the kitchen floor every night, making sure to sweep under the refrigerator. I vacuum regularly to ensure that all crumbs are gone, and I bought steel containers with locking lids for my large bags of dog and cat food. ALL food is stored into hard, plastic containers or decorative steel containers with locking lids. If something doesn't fit there, and is in a box or bag, it's stored in the refrigerator. No food is ever left out overnight, not even a tray of fruit.

Finally, I used metal door sweeps to close gaps underneath doors, and used steel plates to close holes in the walls where utility lines enter and exit, such as the closet where the heat pump sits. There is a small copper line that goes into the wall, and the hole it creates is more than big enough for a mouse or something bigger to crawl through. I also doubled chicken wire and nailed it over dryer vents that exit out of the building. It was a lot of work, and may seem a bit extreme, but if you're serious about getting them out and keeping them out, it will make a big difference.

So far, the poison worked to kill the two mice that had made their way into the building, and locking all the little "doorways" has seemed to keep others out.

Good luck,

By TrinaKBM

Be Careful With Poison

Be Careful with the poison. I had an infestation and got several with snap traps but one was too clever for them. We poisoned it but now it is trapped in the wall cavity (brick wall) and really smells bad, now it is dead. The builder can't come for 2 weeks and then he will have to try knocking out bricks as close to the smell as possible, but it is very hit and miss. It could prove very costly.

I would suggest that if snap traps fail, try your own, home made, trap. I thought of using an upside down lunch box with something heavy, like a book, stuck to the top, and then propping it up with a clothes peg with some string tied to it and some bait underneath. And then just lying in wait, holding the string. It sounds a little cartoon like, but I wished I had tried it now.

By Mackery

Peppermint Oil

I've tried peppermint oil, but it didn't work, I don't want to kill them, not sure what else to do, it's scratching away in the bedroom. I just want something natural to get rid, quick and easy.

By Becks

Ramik Bars

A previous post mentions Ramik Bars. These don't really dehydrate the mice. Instead, they contain anticoagulants, and the mice slowly bleed to death. They become thirsty because they (like us) have an instinct to drink water to boost their blood pressure because they have a drive to live. They will die slowly and most likely painfully.

Try this instead: put a paper towel tube half on and half off of the table/counter where you've found droppings. Put peanut butter or cheese in the far end of the tube. Place a tall kitchen or outside garbage can just under the tube. When the mouse takes the bait, he falls into the bin, along with the paper towel tube. Release at least a mile from the house, then seal your doors and windows to discourage future rodents, snakes, etc.

This works. It's also free and humane. Good luck. (11/03/2005)

By AB

D-Con

I have better luck with the D-Con mouse poison that the sticky traps. Keep your traps, but add the D-Con. Its a sure thing. Sometimes it takes a while to catch a mouse... Guess thats why they always talk about a better mousetrap.. lol (03/07/2006)

By Carol

Get a Cat

The best solution for mice I've ever known, and non-poisonous!, is your very own exterminator in the form of a kitten. That kitten will grow into an even better mouser, all the while keeping your pests off the premises. It will be a companion to you and your children as well. The local shelter will have the cutest ball of fur just waiting for someone to love it and take care of it, and in turn solve your current problem. (03/07/2006)

By Tripleb

Sticky Traps

If you use the sticky traps. Try putting a little bit of bait in the center so the mouse walks on trap to get it. (03/07/2006)

By ERanda

Peppermint Oil

Try this (it sure has worked for me and we used to have such a bad mouse and rat problem that they chewed up our central heat and air ducts which we had to have all replaced. Buy some peppermint oil (the essential oil, *not* the extract but essential peppermint oil) and sprinkle a drop or two in each corner of your rooms, your cabinets and cupboards, even kitchen drawers, any place where you've seen the droppings. If you have access to it, I hear that fresh peppermint plant leaves work the same but I've never tried them, just the oil. They say it works because the mice and rats absolutely detest the smell of peppermint and it sure has worked for me. Good luck! (03/07/2006)

By Lynn from Calif.

Peppermint Oil

Try using Peppermint Oil - 2 teaspoons (or 2 tablespoons - sorry I'm not sure which) to one cup water in a spray gun. re-spray areas every 6 months. Apparently mice are allergic to peppermint. Hope it works for you. (03/07/2006)

By katrina537

Mouse Traps

When we lived on the farm, we had mouse problems. The best solution we ever found was to buy the regular mouse traps, melt a few chocolate chips or candy on a piece of foil and spread it on the bait area with a toothpick. Be generous but don't spread it where it would keep the trap from snapping. It will harden and they will gnaw on it. You can catch several mice with one baiting - works very well. Just make sure to wear gloves when you remove the dead mouse and reset it. CHOCOLATE - I'm telling you - they LOVE it! Easy and efficient! (03/07/2006)

By Marlene

Pest Offense

You have children please don't use any poison. I sell the best brand of essential oils and I hate to tell you this but the peppermint wont work. Your best bet is something called pest offense (check internet). I have used it in 5 states and 7 houses. It always works and is perfectly safe. Make sure you get those droppings clean. Get a black-light and shine it in the dark and find where they are coming in. Mice leave urine everywhere they go. Block those opening with spray foam and brillo pads. If you want to catch them and not kill them they have safe mouse traps use Reases' pieces. You will have to release them several miles from your home. (03/08/2006)

By Dr Beth

My Experience

First, read the excellent advice in TrinaKBM's post. Sealing off the entry holes is the key to getting rid of mice permanently.

Instead of using sheet metal plates, I mixed up a batch of patching plaster, and dipped wads of steel wool in the plaster mix before stuffing into the holes and crevices. When the plaster hardens you can paint it if you want

We had a major mouse entry hole under the sink where the hot/cold water and drain pipes came in through the side of the countertop base unit. This space was too big to stuff with steel wool and too tricky to cut a sheet metal plate to fit, however the plaster/steel wool worked perfectly.

Also check the holes around the hot water pipe if you have forced hot water baseboard heat. Look in corners of closets, where the wall meets the floor, feel up under the kickspace of your kitchen base units, and stuff with steel wool/plaster mix.

Leave out bait packets near the entry holes or where you find droppings. Mice follow scent paths even after old entry holes have been blocked.

I took a box of D-Con norway rat & mouse killer, and tore open a few of the brown 'bait station' things, and poured the green pellets into an old plastic container. Take a small amount (less than a teaspoon) of creamy peanut butter, just enough for flavor/scent, and drop a blob into the pellets and stir with a disposable plastic utensil to coat. If the pellets are clumping together, there is too much peanut butter.

Then take a round mr coffee paper filter, flatten it out, and sprinkle some of the loose green pellets on the filter paper, fold in half, and twist it into a roll.

I make about 4 of these at a time, put one under the refrigerator, one under the (gas) stove, etc. Check to see if they are being eaten or not every day or so. These are very effective. Obviously, don't put the bait where children can get into it. Put the container with the leftover peanut butter/pellet mixture on a high shelf where children can't reach.

But, the main thing is to seal off all the entry points, starting with the kitchen! I was amazed to find a hole in just about every room or closet (this house is about 100 yrs. old.) It's well worth your time to do a thorough inspection and get them all. So far, no mice this year! (03/08/2006)

Bounce Sheets

Get some bounce sheets and put them in the area you don't want the mouse/mice in. I have found that this will keep them away and the area will smell nice too. (03/08/2006)

By Ziggee

Rat Trap

We have had mice every year here on the farm. This year we even had a rat! Horrified!! Anyway, rat's like to eat fruit - so we baited a rat trap with a small sliver of apple and caught him. We use either peanut butter or a small wisp of cotton/batting so they can fluff their nest. This works also. Good luck. One year we caught 42 and then it got better. I think we finally caught the grandparents/parents/aunt-uncles and cousins. Thank goodness. Good luck. (03/08/2006)

By Nancy

Bounce

When we lived up north, we had a terrible mouse problem. At the time when we built our house, our son was having allergy/asthma problems, and we were told to use vent filters over the heat/air vents. I also put a bounce sheet over some just because I liked the smell. For the time we lived in the house, we never had a single mouse, yet the neighbors were still having problems. I have since learned that the bounce kept them away.

When we moved into our current house in GA, the previous occupant left a mouse and rat problem. I still hadn't learned the value of bounce, so I put eucalyptus oil on cotton-balls in the walls. It was then that I learned of bounce, and out it went. It worked! Now we use the combo of those two as well as a cat.

Good Luck
(03/08/2006)

By Amy

Traps

When we had a mice problem my husband went out and spent over $50 on all kinds of products to catch them. None of them worked so I went to the dollar store bought a 4 pack of wooden snap mouse traps and set them with smashed m&ms candies. We caught 7 of them in 2 months. But keep the traps out of reach of kids and throw away the whole trap if you want since they are so cheap.


(03/22/2006)

By Sheila

Mouse Smell

It's true that dead mice stink, but the smell goes away in a week or so. It's not forever. Consider it the smell of victory! (08/29/2006)

By Jonathan

Traps

You can reuse your wooden mouse traps. We use some we've had quite awhile. Every fall we have a few mice who think they can sneak into our garage and have a warm winter. Wrong! We keep a few wooden traps set and always catch one or two then. We find that peanut butter works the best for us as bait. Just put a small dab in so they have to work at getting a nibble and will spring the trap. Just wash your hands after handling the trap. (01/15/2007)

By Grandma Margie

Dried Eucalyptus

Dried eucalyptus. A friend told me she put some in her camper and there were no more mice. I bought a bunch and cut off pieces and laid them around the stove, sink and heating vents. I no longer have a pesky mouse. Who incidentally was so brazen as to try to steal a home fried potato from my counter top, not mention run across my bare feet. (02/26/2007)

By Claire M. Brewer

Finally

I got all the mice out finally. I used the instant potatoes and the lid of water. I am not sure if that worked yet. I used glue traps and put peanut butter (large glue traps) in 3 different areas of the traps and one I put out had 4 on the trap and the other room in the closet and had 2 more. I have one trap left and I have not seen any mice in 3 days. (03/01/2007)

By missymagoo

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