Do mouse troubles have you worried?
If you are looking at this article, chances are good that you have become aware that mice have infiltrated your home. Or, perhaps, you suspect that they have infiltrated but you are not sure. Either way, it's a good idea to know how to identify a mouse infestation.
6 signs of a mouse infestation
When it comes to identifying a mouse problem, you should get all of your senses involved. Well, maybe not touching but you'll see what we mean. Signs of mice include:
- Mouse droppings
These spindle-shaped droppings are about the size of a grain of rice and can often be seen in the backs of drawers, inside cabinets, along floor boards, or anywhere else mice roam.
- Unexplained holes in fabric, insulation, or other materials
Mice will confiscate patches of fabric, rip out insulation, and steal other materials they find inside a home in order to build their nests.
- Tiny holes in kitchen cabinets, drawers, or other areas
Mice use existing holes or gaps in cabinets and drawers and will actually make them bigger if necessary in order to travel wherever it is they want to go. Usually that means places with food.
- Holes in food packaging
Unless your food is stored in the fridge or hard plastic containers, you may be seeing chewed holes in cardboard or thin plastic food containers.
If you accidentally, or on purpose, leave flour or other powdery material on the floor or countertop, and you see tiny footprints in it, the next day, you likely have a mouse infestation. You may also observe this phenomenon in dusty areas of the garage or attic.
- Scratching noises
Mice mostly move around during the nighttime hours. If you hear these noises inside your walls, you may have a mouse or two, or lots more, living in your walls.
What are mice looking for?
If you are convinced that you have mice living inside your home, you may be wondering what brought them inside in the first place. Mice, like all household pests, are looking for three basic things: food, water and shelter.
If you have available food in your house, mice will feel right at home. Some places mice find food include: kitchen counters, pantries, open garbage cans, sinks, floors, underneath couches and beds and underneath toasters.
If you have water sources, mice will probably stick around. Places mice find water include: leaky sinks, sweaty toilets, leaky pipes, moist areas in bathrooms or laundry rooms, or any other area where there is a water leak.
If you have areas that are shut away and quiet, mice will love you for it. Mice love attics, wall voids, and crawl spaces, but they are right at home in any area where there is lots of clutter and not too much activity.
How to get rid of mice in your home
Before getting into how to get rid of mice that have already infiltrated, let's take a look at how to keep them out in the first place:
- Carefully inspect the outside of your home for gaps and cracks, and, if you can't do proper repairs right away, seal up those holes using a caulking gun. Be sure to pay attention to areas around wires, pipes, air conditioning units, etc.
- Trim back bushes and other vegetation from your home. Pests use these as bridges to get to your home.
- Keep your yard neatly trimmed and free of unnecessary clutter and weeds. Mice are likely to hang around in areas where there are lots of hiding places.
- Keep your home clean and free of food and water opportunities for mice and other pests that may make their way in.
While keeping mice out is possible to do on your own, it is much more difficult to completely get rid of mice once they have infested, especially if they have had time to multiply. One female mouse can have 5 to 10 litters per year with 6 to 8 babies each time. Considering that those mice reach breeding age at 6 to 8 weeks, one mouse can become a large infestation in a relatively short period of time.
While traps and other do-it-yourself methods may help to cull the population of mice in your home, it will be difficult to tell if all the mice are gone and many homeowners find themselves in a never-ending battle and ongoing frustration. As with most pest infestations, the best course of action to totally get rid of mice is to employ the help of a professional pest control company . You don't have to live with mice doing damage and spreading illness and diseases in your home, reach out to EnviroPest today and find out how good life can be when you're mouse-free!
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