The following tidbits are from The Complete Book of Essential Oils & Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood:
"To discourage mice from entering your house, use spearmint or peppermint--fresh or dried plant, or essential oil to water and alcohol. Perfume is the strongest formulation and should comprise 15-30 percent essential oil. This placed strategically around the house and roof [crawlspace] should discourage them from turning your residence into theirs." (p. 316)
"Perfume--Dosage variable--There are two methods: you can use either simply dissolved in alcohol or oil and apply to the body as you would a perfume, or incorporate them into a perfume (see "The Still-Room," chapter 14)." (p. 12)
I haven't tried this yet, but plan too as soon as I can get my peppermint planted and harvested and dried so I can bundle it up and have dh cram it into the rips and tears he noted in the insulation in the crawl space. We found an entrance hole in the floor behind the kitchen sink under cabinet when I pulled out the dishwasher to vacuum up poop. I'm going to douse the exposed insulation with peppermint oil when dh gets ready to mount an old front license plate over the hole. Also thinking of planting peppermint and lavender along the foundation to help deter multiple pests. *grin* (07/26/2003)
I grew up on a mid west farm and we always had mint planted around the house, but in the harvest season, the pesky little buggers come around, believe it or not MOTH BALLS work the best in the attic and basement.
Ditto, MOTH BALLS in places that you and your pets don't have to breath in constantly. (08/02/2003)
We live in Arizona and have PLENTY of the little unwanted mice. We tried a lot of thing but I think we just fattened up the little boogers.a friend told up to use plaster of Paris and cornmeal; mixed about half of each together and place under the house. Put some water out so they can get a drink, and you'll start finding dead mice shortly. The plaster of Paris burns their stomachs out,when they get a drink.
Have you ever tried to hold it in your hand after molding it? It get REAL HOT. Check your mixture everyday and replenish when needed. We have no more mice around here now thank goodness,but we still keep the magic potion out for them. (04/22/2004)
I have used a cotton ball soaked in peppermint oil and it works for 3 to 4 months. But I am having a time finding the oil. I can find the extracts but not the oil I place the cotton ball in a plastic cap and place it where I smell the boogers. And believe me they do smell. (06/11/2004)
Hello there, I'm just going to leave a few words behind, as a person who just had a bad experience of dead rotten pest, in my case a rat (gross as it might be) but in other cases mice, etc. Please do not use any poisons (rodenticide) what so ever, YOU WILL REGRET IT. About 4 weeks ago I saw a pest running across my floor which lead to me buying a poison bait pellet. The rat cleaned off two plates of it and about 4 weeks later I'm tearing down my living room walls to locate it to remove it due to this extremely bad smell. After doing my home work on the internet about these poisons, this is what came up; rodents that will eat a rodenticide will die because of internal hemorrhaging, that is thinning of the blood. (02/08/2005)
I have had the little boogers in my house for the past two years and have spoiled my family's Christmas! I have got a pond and a small garden and didn't realize till last year that I had a gap in my window frame, I have sealed all these up now and got a plug in detector so hopefully that's done the trick but its nice to hear tips still! I just would hate them to spoil this Christmas coming because I am terrified of the mice! (08/19/2005)
I've been using fox urine. You get where the sell hunting stuff. It's called red fox urine(scent). I spray it all around the perimeter of my house. Keep in mind, this stuff smells horrible - like a skunk. Anyways fox is a predator of mice. I haven't had any problems at all. If you stand out side and you don't smell anything I would redo it. I haven't found out yet time frame for reapplying. (09/18/2005)
Mice hate fleecy fabric softener. Either the sheets or pour some liquid on a cloth and put it where they come in. Especially your camp. Also spearmint gum does the trick too. Lay it in your cupboards and floors in your camp and mice will stay away. Good luck! (10/27/2005)
By Judy Therrien
I just bought an organic product called Squirrel Repellent (also for Chipmunks) by Messina Wildlife. I haven't tried it (bought it to give as a gift and haven't given it yet), although the people at the garden center said others that have purchased it really like it. I paid $12.99 for a 35.2 oz. ready to use spray bottle which will cover a 1100 square foot area. It is all organic. Was told it is safe to use around pets. This company also makes similar products. One is Mole Repellent that says it also works on mice. The website is www.MessinaWildlife.com. Click on: view e-catalog and MSDS sheets to read more information on the products (including ingredients). Please read the directions and information carefully in case I misquoted. (10/07/2006)
I have been told by people with collectible cars and from boat owners to put fabric softener sheets in them. I always use the regular scented ones. I've also used moth balls in the extra shed during the winter for mice (although I don't like the smell, no one goes into it in the winter anyways). (10/07/2006)
I have mice at the cottage every year. I have a large pail of poison with a ramp for the little pains but my distribution method needs much to be desired. Mouse traps are touchy, time consuming and do work but I like the sticky pads with a gob of peanut butter on them, its a sure thing but costly. I tried peppermint oil and I do think it works for a while but not certain how often I need to re soak them, so I will try it again next spring when we open the camp again. I am going to get the fox uring I understand it really works.
The method I heard of as well and tried it but they didn't eat it was potato flakes with a water source next to it. They eat the flakes and drink and explode? I think the plaster of paris and cornmeal might work better so in the spring I am going to do that too. I like to do a couple of things at once to secure them not coming in but then its difficult sometimes to know which is working or not. I think I have it figure out though, I hope. Keep the information coming everyone.
Is it obvious that I am obsessed with this and can you tell I hate them. (11/04/2006)
I had mice in my apartment during fall last year and now it's back. I tried peppermint oil and it seemed to work "maybe" I'm not quite sure. I'm also using the ultrasonic sound wave that mice hate. I find the sticky traps really sad...they die so slowly...I think the snap traps are the fastest way for them to die. I have only used it once and when I found the mouse he was stuck to the sticky pad and it was also stuck on my dog's paw. The little thing was making teenie squeeky sounds. It's so sad, and disgusting, because all it's oil is rubbed all over the pad. (03/28/2007)
Peppermint Oil really works. You will need to do it at least once a month. I used it for months and laid off for about three months and I saw a mouse. I went back to using it that night. I am now trying the dryer sheets. (08/13/2007)
Please do not use rodenticides. Mice and other rodents simply STORE huge stashes of it year after year throughout your home--in walls, couches, bedding, linen closets. I am a caretaker of summer cottages and I have OFTEN found it stored in peoples beds--inside and under their pillows. This stuff causes the blood to thin, which makes for severe internal bleeding. Image lying on a pillow filled with it, breathing it in... not good. Rodenticide is counterproductive also because it KILLS the very things that EAT mice. Wolves, coyotes, eagles hawks fox, fishers and weasels, etc eat poisoned mice and die. More mice, less mouse predators. BAD.
Using [predator urine can work if you are diligent in it's application. As to the peppermint oil, I have heard that peppermint altoids work, and I intend to try this.One option that we have had some success with is to attract a weasel (if you in an area where they are--we live in the woods in Northern Wisconsin, but weasels and mink are nearly everywhere) We put out bones--weasels and mink and otters LOVE bones, and if you throw a few clean bones under your house occasionally, they will come for them, and they will keep checking to see if there are more. If you can get them to start hanging around, they will clean up on the mice, and leave no mess--they eat the whole mouse--and they don't poop where they eat. They are very tidy. Mice can't usually hide from weasels because weasels can get into small places where mice try to hide. If you aren't able to attract a weasel or mink or otter, get a ferret. They are also from the weasel family and will hunt mice as well. Other animals that are good mousers are calico or tortoise shell cats, (but many cats will hunt) Jack Russell terriers and other terrier types are good hunters, and I had a border collie/springer spaniel cross who was an excellent mouser and squirrel hunter who hunted until she was 17. She lived to be 18.5. Good luck, and for your own safety and the safety of the environment, DON'T USE POISON. (08/29/2007)
By Ruby mallon
Everyone just be very careful when /how and where you use moth balls. They are one of the most poisonous products to humans on the market. They actually make me physically ill when I smell them, so I did some research and found out about there poisonous qualities. Since it is getting cooler I have had mice begin to come indoors, I am going to try the peppermint oil suggestions and also get some good old spring loaded traps so I can dispose of them when they are caught. Tried the pellets and they do kill them but it is no fun tearing downs walls and ceilings to find the little nasty later to get rid of the smell, plus when they are in the process of decay the flies come around and they are just as nasty and disease carrying. Good luck to everyone. (10/10/2007)
Here is a site for peppermint oil, if anyone needs some.
I have heard that very fine steel wool works. Placed at any point that looks like an entrance. They try to chew their way through and it kills them. (10/14/2007)
I tried A LOT of things. those sound plug in DO work but I don't know for how long. We have one in our room and in the kitchen but if there is food that they REALLY want left out they WILL hunt it down and make a mess. We get them A LOT under our kitchen cupboards and I am SICK of having to clean mouse poo out of ALL my utensils. I never thought of trying the dryer sheets. I will let you all know how that goes. :-) (10/29/2007)
Sorry to disagree with moth ball folks but here in Florida the mice thrive on moth balls just like there are termites that eat through concrete. (11/03/2007)
I heard of peppermint oil today so called local pharmacy and they had it in stock a little over 5 dollars for it, so I am on my way to get some! (11/07/2007)
By CONNIE WILSON
How is your method any different from a poison? Sooner or later won't you be smelling decaying rodents in your walls? I can't imagine your food-based bait kills instantly--even poisons don't do that. And I can tell you a decaying mouse smells for weeks. Enough to make a room unusable. (12/12/2007)
You can purchase peppermint oil among many other essential oils at liberty natural products for very low prices. If peppermint oil is the solution, this may be a site to look at. The URL is <http://www.libertynatural.com> (12/13/2007)
I am extremely petrified of mice. I cant stand the site of them, I have tried using the pellets, but the mice tend to die in the house leaving bad smells and I still have to look at them. I cant imagine myself cleaning up. I invested in a device called the PEST MAGIC. It is wonderful. I plug it on day and night time. this device does not kill the rodents but keeps them away from your home. keeping it plugged in, electrical signals are sent out that disturbs their nervous system which chases these rodents away. the device is excellent I have had it for many months, it is safe for the whole family, as the signals sent out are harmless to humans because of its mild tension. good luck to everyone out there! (02/16/2008)
Instead of glue traps I used 'fly-papers' they are thin strips of sheets which have the same sticky glue as found on glue traps.
These are handy as they can be cut and used accordingly. I carefully cut a thin strip and stick it on to the side of the mouse trap- This means the when the mice try to outsmart the traps by eating the food from the side they will get stuck and SNAP! Quick and easy- no fuss, no suffering. I hate them but I still feel bad for them. Plus getting rid of them whilst they are still alive is gross and a nuisance.
Also to stop them from taking the food from the traps and running off- pressure must be applied on the trigger by them therefore sticking the food on either with fly paper, cello tape, or super glue.
And put lots of traps together in a way so that if it tries to touch one the other will off and etc. And at particular entrance/exit points you know of theirs put about 3 traps in a row so they will jump on to them.
Burn about 3 or 4 sticks of incense in your home overnight and put a peppermint plant in your kitchen. (03/21/2008)
Please don't use the glue papers - it's terribly cruel and not good for household karma! I catch mice and rats in humane traps and then take them far away from the house and release them. I know it's an on going battle but we really love our little mice they are so sweet. Another humane method I've heard about is getting a large stainless steel bowl, putting peanut butter or something yummy in it and a ramp or some way of getting to the rim of the bowl. the mice jump in but cannot get out as the surface is too slippery. You can then pop them in a box and take them for a drive. I guess one could also use the bath in the same way as I found a little exhausted mouse in our bath who got in and couldn't get out. The sonic mouse things also work - but you cannot have any pet mice or rats. (04/02/2008)
Just a heads up; I tried the Irish Spring Soap method last winter, in the shed, but the mice actually ate most of it. I am going to try the moth balls and dryer sheets next. (04/16/2008)
I've read that they used dryer sheets. So just besides putting steel wool where they come in, I also use a couple of dryer sheets. (05/07/2008)
Place a high rim glass bowl on a stove filled with old French fry oil filled half way. Leave on the stove, come back in a day and you will have caught and trapped your mouse. As silly as it sounds it work for me and my boyfriend. I caught a mouse trying to get in the fry oil but we had it covered one night. We left it uncovered the next day there was the mouse stuck in a swimming pool of oil. (06/05/2008)
I just wanted to add some info because I'm concerned about what some of you are saying. First of all, use snap traps whenever possible. I recommend rat traps in most cases. Small mouse traps are only good for babies and in that case the glue boards work much better. I use gum drops as bait. Just mash em down on the bait tab.
My concern for those of you who say you are cleaning up feces constantly. If that is the case you need to get real aggressive about putting out traps or call an exterminator because you have an infestation. Mice can reproduce every 6 to 8 weeks and they can have more than half a dozen babies at a time.
And please stop worrying about being humane. These are vermin and if they are in your home they need to die. You won't be so worried about their feelings if one of your children or pets gets sick from them will you? (06/26/2008)
A few hints:
1. DO NOT use poison they will die and rot in your house.
2. The best way to get rid of mice is to NOT LET THEM IN! Do everything to keep them out and away from your house of course easier said then done.
3. DO NOT use humane traps! When you let them go they will come right back in. It is true. I have done a study of it.
4. You want them DEAD. They are are viscous. They will attack you or your pets if they feel threatened and can cause very bad wounds.
5. Even if you think they are all gone, still use many spring traps just in case because lets face it. More will come back. Spring are the best.
6. Use peanut butter for traps. They have to lick it off so they cant get away very easily. Wait a few hours before getting them out of the trap. They might still be alive and bite you. (07/09/2008)
The ultrasonic doesn't really work,and I have not tried the peppermint oil but we will buy a plant tomorrow. The old wooden traps seem to work the best, but the guy with the fly paper suggestion had a good idea, and the gumdrops. I am trying both of those out tonight. I just saw one run across the floor earlier, so we will find out. The best thing to do is follow the feces, and look for what they have been eating and set traps from there. They like ANYTHING, but try and use a "sweet" bait. Good luck everybody. All of us here HATE mice! (07/10/2008)
By Jenn & Bubba
Try FRESH CAB botanical scent pouches. It is the only EPA registered plant-based repellent Federally evaluated as both safe and effective for indoor use. The efficacy is very high, and the company has a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Place a pouch where there may be any entrances, or access to food and water. By a door, in the pantry, under the sink, garage, entryway. You can buy it at any TSC store in the nation, or at Menards, and other hardware stores. (07/13/2008)
By Kari & Jim
I am opposed to killing mice, so I have used the Have-a-Heart type traps, and Victor Tin Cat traps. (They can be bought at hardware stores, and probably also on line.) I am very successful and always use humane methods with these two types of traps. I put peanut butter and a small piece of apple in the traps in order to attract them and also keep them hydrated. (In the Have a Heart type, the food goes on the metal in the middle of the trap.) I also put a toilet paper roll in the Victor Tin Cat trap for the mouse to hide in. Once caught, I take them to a Wildlife Rescue and (with their permission), release them in the field, because it is an excellent habitat for the mice.
I know mice can be carriers of disease and can bite, but the white-footed deer mice in my area are absolutely precious and have an affinity toward humans. I have actually kept the mice I caught in the fall, in tanks, with wheels, mice food, water bottles, etc. (Also had them sexed and checked for disease by a small mammal vet), and then released them in the late, late Spring, when grasses, etc. were plentiful.
What is most important, while you are catching the mice, is to work even harder on finding and sealing all the entrances to your home. There are websites (and even companies) that will delineate all the ways houses can be invaded by mice. Ways to block them out include: caulking around pipes that exit the house, that have gotten gaps in them, ducts that need heavy-duty small spaced screens over them (special glue is needed I sure.), check the garage THOROUGHLY for gaps where the molding meets (or doesn't meet) the floor, or where electrical and other lines come out from the inside of the house to the garage. These spaces can be filled in with expanding foams from Home Depot type stores, or with steel wool stuffed in them tightly. For the kitchen, check under an at the back of the sink area where cleaning products can be stored. Again, seal up the space where water lines, etc. leave that area. Usually there is a gap in that hole that a mice can fit through. Often, there are holes in the dry wall behind the drawer areas. Take out the drawers and look at the drywall for holes. I did nothing more than use cardboard and duct tape to close several openings, and no more mice going into drawers, etc.
Mice can climb up brick. I had very strong screens (the squares in in should be about 1/4 inch or less, I'm told) glued in place over the small air ducts. Air goes out, mice (and birds), don't go in.
Some brick homes have "weep holes" near the base of the house. Honestly, I didn't really examine whether they allowed for mouse entry, but I did allow the man putting up the screens to screen them too. This is done inside the weep hole and cannot really be noticed.
I also had screens (again, with thick wire), placed behind the triangular slats on either side of my attic. For sure, no bats will get inside.
Another reason for screening out the mice, is that snakes can detect them in your home, and it if the opening is large enough, they may "come a callin', too."
One way to check the areas under pipes coming from your home, the corners of window wells, ducts which are low to the ground, etc., is to go outside with a smallish mirror, and simply position it under the place you want to check. The reflection will obviously be in the mirror--which you will easily see by looking at the mirror, while still standing up.
Although I truly know the joys of "tame" (white footed deer mice), I also am extremely aware of the disease that wild mice can carry and transmit. Let's not forget that pregnant women are not to handle kitty litter (especially if they own "outdoor" cats), because the cat may be a carrier of the toxoplasmosis (sp?) which can come from mice. (This can cause severe birth defects in the fetus.)
Realistically, many people will not go to the lengths I have, to rid their house of mice, in a way that is very kind to the mice. However, I would like to suggest that people who do not want to trap the mice and take them (many miles) away to a wildlife type location, use a method that kills them instantaneously. After all, mice are bred to be treasured home-based pets, and there are even Mouse Fancier Organizations. My childhood mouse was an albino born in my 7th grade science class. He was very affectionate and a dear little pet. It seems to me that we big, strong, smart humans can do better than "burn their stomachs" or cause internal hemorrhaging, with chemicals, which I'm sure causes untold suffering. (And also poisons other treasured wild life in the food chain.) I have seen mice mothers show incredible attention and devotion to their "pinkies" (newborns), as well as to their mates.
If they have to be killed in your home, my vote is to use a method that eliminates suffering.
Meanwhile, call your wildlife specialists, pest control companies (humane removal), check out your yellow pages, computer, etc., and figure out the best way to seal off mouse home-accessing openings. Don't keep doors open (especially at late dusk and evening), put garage wild birdseed in galvanized metal small trash cans, (same for cat/dog food), get secure trash cans with tight fitting lids, and clean up that garage floor and seal off (foam) or plug up (steel wool), all openings to the house from the garage.
Now, feel good that what cost me mucho bucks and years to learn, just came to you all in one (long) e-mail.
Wishing everyone good luck with securing their home, and removing (kindly) their home invaders. (07/24/2008)
Anyone try that stuff called mouseaway? A guy that had a rv dealership told me he used that stuff in the rv's in the winter, and didn't have mouse troubles, so I might try that. I'm having problems with them in my cars, I tried the dryer sheets didn't work, nor did the moth balls. I hate them getting into things, but I'd still never use a product that would burn their stomach out, or those glue sticky things, they really are an awful way for them to die. The mice really were here first, and while I curse them, I couldn't use a product that killed them in a cruel prolonged way. Guess ill try the peppermint or the mouseaway next. also was reading about a product called homelessmouse. Suppose to be some awful scent to mice but people cant smell it. Have no idea if it works. (08/17/2008)
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