Pest Control for Mice all you need to know. You may have landed here because you suspect you have a mice infestation. On the other hand, you may have found this post because you’re wondering how you can protect your home from mice entering in the first place.
Whether the first or the latter, this article will help.
This blog will discuss pest control for mice: how you can prevent a mice infestation, how to recognise if you already have mice, what you can do about it at home, and also when you should call in the professionals.
Why Do Mice Come Into Homes?
When the weather starts to get colder, mice find it more difficult to find food sources outside. They often begin to venture into homes to look for food and also for warmth and shelter. If you have food lying about, or a pet that has dried food down at all times, then this is another draw for a mouse to find a way into your home.
Three main kinds of mice enter UK homes: House Mice, Wood Mice, and Yellow Necked Mice.
Whilst you would expect most infestations to be house mice, wood mice are more commonly found in homes.
House mice tend to stay in cities, where there are lots of food scraps around, and restaurants often experience issues with house mice. Essentially, it doesn’t matter if you live in a rural or urban location, there is still a possibility that mice will try and enter your home
How Do They Get In and How Can I Deter Them From Coming In?
A mouse can squeeze through a two cm gap, so they will often be able to find a way into your home that you weren’t even aware existed.
However, there are some things you can do to try and deter mice from coming into your home in the first place.
Check around the outside of your home, if there are any gaps, have them filled in to ensure there are no entry points open to mice or other pests. As mice can fit through very small spaces, this isn’t always easy, and vents/pipe outlets can be problematic, but the lower down the gap, the more likely it is to be a problem.
Do the very best you can and fill in as many of the holes as possible.
If you are a cat fan, getting a cat is a great way to deter mice and other rodents such as rats, and even if you do get the odd one slip in, a cat will often catch it – unless the cat is incredibly lazy.
If you live in an older home with floorboards instead of concrete floors, then mice can sometimes find a way into your home from below ground level. With this in mind, you may want to consider having a professional flooring company in to see if they can seal off gaps in the floorboards or have laminate flooring placed over the floorboards right to the edges of the room to prevent little intruders.
Ultrasonic mouse deterrents are a tool designed to deter mice from coming into your home. You can buy mains or battery-powered ones. The idea behind them is that mice can hear the loud pitched noise, which is not audible to the human ear, and they don’t like it, so it stops them from entering the vicinity.
There are also some other, more natural remedies you can try. Cleaning is an obvious first step, ensuring there is no food left lying around in your home. Pets should be fed at feeding time, and then leftovers removed so as not to attract vermin.
Rodents, due to their strong sense of smell, do not like strong scents, so putting clothes soaked in peppermint oil near potential entry points is a great way to deter them. Other strong scents such as lemon and vinegar are also sometimes used in the same manner.
What Problems Do They Cause?
The biggest problem with mice is that they breed very quickly, so it doesn’t take long to get overrun with them.
In fact, by the time you actually see a mouse, you probably have quite a number of them as houseguests.
They are usually quite peaceful beings, and you won’t see much of them, but they can, at times, cause damage to soft furnishings, electrical cables, and furniture. They can also carry diseases, so having them climbing on surfaces where you prepare food or sharing your dog’s dinner is not ideal at all.
Mice leave a lot of droppings lying around, and no faecal matter is pleasant, so this is another reason to either prevent or get on top of an infestation as quickly as possible.
How Do You Know if You Have Mice?
In the early stages of an infestation, where you only have one or two mice in your home, you may notice very little in terms of signs of them being there.
It is not unusual to spot signs around food sources, for example, kitchen cupboards. Droppings are often a common first sign of a mouse problem. You may also potentially notice chewed packets in your food cupboards.
If you have dried pet food down all the time, then you may notice the bowl starts to empty faster than normal, and sometimes, you will find little piles of that food in hiding places, which the mice have left for later should they need it.
Sometimes you will notice a smell in your home that is likened to ammonia. This smell usually only occurs with a house mice infestation, and if you use a lot of scented products in your home, you may not notice it at all.
The last sign of mice being in your home is seeing them. As mentioned previously, by the time you actually see a mouse, the chances are you have many more than just one living in your home.
Mice are nocturnal, do not like noise, and most definitely do not like people, so the most common time to see them would be if you were sitting quietly at night and you see one scurry across your floor.
What Can You Do Yourself To Get Rid of Mice Yourself?
There are many different types of mice traps available.
Humane mouse traps catch an unsuspecting mouse by luring it into a chamber with food. Once inside, the trap will tilt, causing the door to close on the mouse, locking them inside. You can then let the mouse go outside the next morning and repeat the process until you have caught no more mice for a few nights. This is the kindest way to rid your home of mice, especially if the infestation is in its early stages and you are not overrun.
Snap traps are the traditional trap that will snap shut on a mouse when they trigger the trap by taking the bait. These are available in a covered in device, so you don’t actually have to see the mouse.
Electric traps are fairly new to the market, and essentially deliver a fatal electric shock to the mouse once it is trapped inside.
Glue traps are considered inhumane and not used as much as other devices, essentially, when a mouse walks on it to get the bait, their feet will become stuck. These traps are not ideal as often mice will starve to death, which is very painful, and mice have even been known to chew off their own feet to try and escape.
When Should You Call Pest Control?
Calling in pest control for mice should be done sooner rather than later to prevent the need to kill lots of animals unnecessarily. Whilst a small infestation is manageable yourself, if you are uncertain how to deal with it, or afraid of mice, then seeking professional advice would be wise.
If you are seeing mice regularly or have signs of mice in multiple areas of the home, this is also a good time to call in pest control.
Prevention is always better than trying to control an infestation, so follow the steps in the prevention section of this blog post to decrease your chances of mice entering your home.
Ensure your home is cleaned regularly of crumbs (even down to coffee grains on the worktops), and use other preventive measures such as ultrasonic machines, peppermint oil, and ideally a pet cat to deter them from coming in.
Ensure all entry points are filled where possible.
If you do start to notice signs of mice, don’t panic, it is a lot more common than you think. If you’re uncertain what to do then call pest control immediately, but if you’re comfortable with managing the problem yourself (and it has not yet gotten out of hand) then you could attempt to free your home of mice yourself.
Mice are generally not problematic, but can cause damage and sometimes carry diseases, they also breed very quickly, so it is important to address a mouse issue as soon as possible.
Read more about our pest control for mice here.