The House Mouse
The most common of all the rodent pests that may invade your home, the house mouse reproduces rapidly. A single pair of house mice in your home can quickly multiply to a full-blown infestation.
With one female mouse birthing six babies every three weeks, a mouse infestation is no joking matter. Know how to identify signs of a mice infestation, as well as what to do when you think you may have a problem on your hands.
HOW TO IDENTIFY HOUSE MICE
House mice are smaller than the other common rodent pest–rats–and are a dusty gray color. They will have pale white bellies and a rounded shape. These pests are roughly two to three inches long and are found throughout the United States. Generally, mice move in packs. If you see one mouse, you likely have more.
Appearance, Behavior, and Signs
House mice eat a variety of foods but prefer cereal grains, seeds, and insects. However, in times of starvation, they will even eat meat or other food products.
They are mostly blind and unable to see colors and have difficulty looking beyond six inches. They can jump up to a foot high in their quest for food and security.
Mice live for less than a year and a half, but in that time period have the ability to inflict major amounts of damage.
House mice produce litters of up to six individuals, around eight times a year. This prolific pattern means that a single mouse can quickly spawn a huge infestation.
House mice prefer to live outdoors, nesting in dark, quiet areas. They build their nests out of fabric and paper products but have also been known to make them out of wall insulation and other similar materials.
They can enter into homes through small holes, and have even been known to gnaw through materials in order to gain entry.
HOW DO YOU GET HOUSE MICE
House mice can enter your home through a hole the width of a pencil! Make sure all gaps are sealed and keep your home free of clutter. Mice will use the clutter as a place to hide, as well as for building materials for their nests.
HOW TO GET RID OF HOUSE MICE
- If you suspect a mouse infestation, you should first examine your home for nests. Telltale signs of mouse infestation include droppings, damaged food packaging, and a musty odor.
- Make sure you keep your home clean and tidy in order to reduce the likelihood of a mouse infestation. They will nibble on any food that has been left out–including pet food.
- Once you have an infestation, the easiest way to take care of the problem is by utilizing snap traps, glue traps, or bait. Keep in mind that pets and children may interfere with these items, so it’s important to put them where wandering hands–or noses–won’t find them.
- In some cases, you may need to contact a certified pest control professional who can take care of the problem for you. This is especially useful in situations where the infestation has grown so large that it is impractical to continue setting traps to catch only one at a time. These professionals will evaluate every possible attractant and point of entry, and then remove each factor as they remove the infestation.
House Mice Facts
If you suspect a house mice infestation, be sure you get rid of it right away. Mouse urine can induce allergies or asthma attacks, and mice are also carriers for a number of diseases.
Furthermore, mice are vectors for fleas, ticks, lice, and mites, all of which can then hop onto your skin and cause a wide range of ailments.