After opening my shed last summer I was appalled to find that a mouse had been evidently living in there. A small hole in the ceiling showed that they just chewed right in. Everything from paperwork to my child’s stuffed animals was destroyed into tiny shreds. The place stunk of urine and fecal matter. I had to find a way to get these little critters out and FAST! Mice are known to carry Mouse pox, Lyme disease, various bacterial infections, along with multiple viral infections. With a child and disabled elderly adult in the house along with a few family pets there was no way I could use traditional traps and poisons. I turned to my favorite search engine and got to work finding ecofriendly and safe alternatives to traps and mice poison.
Homemade mice traps showed up with great reviews. These are very simple and you can use things you have around the house. Simply take an empty 5 gallon bucket, bait (peanut butter works well) and a toilet paper tube. Crease the tube so it forms a flatted bottom type tunnel and put the bait on one end of the tube. Balance the tube carefully on the edge of a table or counter with the treat hanging directly over the bucket. When the mouse scurries to the treat it is likely he will fall into the bucket since mice love tunnels. I can’t vouch for this once since I did not try it myself but from what I have heard it has worked many times before! If you’re trapping them live, make sure you take them far enough away to release them. If you don’t chances are you’ll be seeing the same mouse again.
My tried and true favorite here is peppermint oil. Some say mice are allergic and some say they just hate it but either way IT WORKS! Purchase peppermint oil via online retailers or at your local home goods store, making sure to buy peppermint oil and not peppermint extract. Soak a few cotton balls with the oil and stick them in the corners and crevices near the mice’s favorite spots if you know them. If you don’t, spread them out to were you find any urine stains, fecal matter, or chewed up items. This one may take a few days to rid yourself completely but it is definitely worth the wait.
All natural mice repellants are also a good option. Though they can be a little pricey, they have been a tried and true method for many. They come as pellets and granules that smell like predators. The little critters of course don’t want to run the risk of being eaten so they scurry off to another home.
Another great idea is to use a specially designed strobe light or ultrasonic repeller. These can be a bit pricey they are all natural and safe around children and pets. Simply set up the ultrasonic repeller according to the instructions, press on and walk away. Strobe lights are better for outside pests, such as an infestation in a shed or garden since they may be annoying or hinder your sleeping at night time.
If you feel you must kill the mice, there are several electric traps that will kill them without the worry of small children or animals coming in contact with sticky glues/tapes and poisons. While some don’t feel this is the best option, if it’s what you have to do you can at least have the knowledge that they do not suffer before death as they are killed instantly? It’s easy to clean up, no worry about a dying mouse running into a hole and your home or garage having lingering dead mouse odor.
Trapping is just one step in the process. Making sure mice can’t come into your house in the first place is most important. Search for gaps and holes in your outside walls and fill with steel wool. A mouse can squeeze through a crack that is only about 1/4 inch big. Putting a trench of pea gravel around your home will help keep mice away. Mice have a hard time digging through pea gravel and tend to give up and leave. Keep you hedges and bushes trimmed down nicely, mice don’t like to be in open spaces. There are many ways to prevent another mouse infectation once you’ve rid yourself of your current situation.