A Smart Mouse

sheryl_ontario(Muncho Lake, BC z2)October 6, 2009

I have had mice find their way into the cupboard under the sink constantly in the two years that we have lived here. This cupboard is not connected to anything else so there is no where else for them to go. We keep the kitchen garbage there and that is probably what draws them. They come in through the holes cut for the pipes on the side wall and the bottom.


I have used dollar store mouse traps with success until recently. We have been getting one smart mouse lately! He/she was stealing the bait (I use bacon) and leaving the trap unsprung so I started wrapping a thin strip of bacon around the little piece of metal and closing the little tooth on it. Still stolen bait with trap unsprung.

Then I tied the bacon in place with thread wrapped around boh ways and tied tightly. The bacon was nibbled off around the thread with the trap unsprung, so I modified the trap.

I took the bend out of the end of the metal stick that holds the springing part in place so the springing square of metal is just barely sitting on the edge of the stick, ready to spring with a slight breeze. Now I am finding the bait gone, the trap sprung and still no mouse.

I bought a different kind of mouse trap with the side curve on the stick that holds the springing metal in place. Works no better.

I have given up on the traps. I used duct tape and closed off the entire floor area where the pipes were coming up so nothing could get in. He ate a hole in the duct tape.

On Friday I removed all the old tape and stuffed steel wool into the holes. Then I covered the entire floor pipe area and the biggest hole in the side wall with an aluminum pie plate cut to fit tightly around the pipes and lay smoothly. I got out the duct tape and taped this entire area, again, holding the aluminim down smoothly with no edges showing. I even covered the tiny areas between the pipes. Everything covered with aluminum pie plate and duct tape.

Yesterday morning, upon arising, I opened the cupboard door and there sat a mouse beside the garbage can, looking at me! What a surprise! I quickly shut the door before he could get out into the house. I went away for about an hour and thought about what to do, hoping he would go back where he came from. I opened the door again and there he was, looking at me.

I shut the cupboard door and went about my business, thinking about how to catch him and hoping he would just go away. Hubby came into the house and I told him about the mouse. He said I should just get a better mousetrap and quit buying the cheap ones from the dollar store. What could possibly be any different between an expensive mouse trap and a cheap one. Its not electronic. Is a better metal going to make it work better? I said, "Uh, okay...".

Hubby went to look for the mouse and told me that he must have left because he was no longer there. I had a good look and moved everything around - no mouse. All my previous work was still in place. It occurred to me that he probably came in through a small pipe hole in the wall that I didin't tape. (Its really tiny!) and can't get back out again. Otherwise he would have taken off after the first encounter.

This morning I covered the other small wall holes with aluminum pie plate and duct tape. There is absolutely no way anything can get in there now. If that mouse comes back he will be a houdini mouse!

Will he be able to eat his way though the heavy aluminium, push it up off the floor or cut himself another hole though the wall? We'll see.

I should catch him live and let him loose in the chicken house. That's always good for a couple of hour's entertainment. Those gals sure do love mice! They pounce in them and then spend some time chasing each other around with it until its all slowly eaten, every last scrap.

I am as stubborn as this mouse and a lot smarter, I think...

Here is a link that might be useful: Providence Acres Farm Blog

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You don't have a mouse, you have the ghost of a mouse! To get through the traps, pie plates, tape and everything else you have used, the little guy has to be made of ectoplasm.
When we had this problem, I cut the metal lids of coffee cans and turned the sharp metal points out, then used caulk to attach the lids around the pipes with the points on the "entrance" side. That deterred the mice, but of course, ours weren't phantoms.
Our hens just stomp mice to death, I think. Anyway, I find very flat mice in the coop--no blood, no perforations, just FLAT mice. You should see what they do to snakes. Our ladies have attitude!

    Bookmark   October 6, 2009 at 10:48AM
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pris(8B TX)

I've had mice gnaw holes in pvc water line. Try this. It works better. You just have to check it periodically to make sure it's still tight.

Take an SOS pad and pull it to loosen the steel wool fibers. Stuff it around the pipes tightly. I've had people say to use plain steel wool and it does work somewhat, but not as well. The mouse doesn't like the steel wool texture but will eventually push through. The soap in the SOS pad definetely works better. Now you have texture and taste. Works for me.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2009 at 3:04PM
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bill7(NW MN)


    Bookmark   October 10, 2009 at 12:13PM
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sheryl_ontario(Muncho Lake, BC z2)

The SOS sounds good. He hasn't broken in again yet. If he does I will go the SOS pad route. I would like a couple of porch kitties but hubby won't go for it.

Here is a link that might be useful: My Farm Blog

    Bookmark   October 11, 2009 at 5:41PM
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Try the sticky stuff, if he gets on he won't get off

    Bookmark   October 16, 2009 at 11:00AM
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johanna_h(Z5 SW MI)

Aargh! I've had such mice in my barn this year! In the past I've used poison, but now my indoor cats go outside, so that's out of the question. They do a great job mousing in the house (and I've learned to put on my slippers before getting out of bed, lest I find a random tail or foot on the rug!!!), but they don't go in the barn. They're scared of the chickens.

I once saw a rooster grab a mouse and swallow it in just about one slurp. I was mightily impressed! But my current hens don't seem to go after the mice at all.

Thinking about getting a couple of barn cats...

Here is a link that might be useful: My place: Busy Solitude Farm

    Bookmark   October 17, 2009 at 8:03PM
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You ought to see what my hens do to a mouse. They stomp it to death. The poor thing is utterly flat--no blood; they don't eat it; just a very FLAT mouse laying in the coop. I don't know how they do it! They have also killed a 2' long rat snake that made the mistake of getting into their coop. Needless to say, I am very nice and very careful of my little flock!

    Bookmark   October 17, 2009 at 9:08PM
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softmentor(z9/sunset13 CA desert)

You may have a rat or a vole or some other creature, not a mouse, since the sprung trap didn't get it. Either way, rat or mouse or what ever, try the stick boards. They sell them at feed stores and at Home Depot. But I have to agree, nothing keeps the little biters at bay like a good cat that hunts.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2009 at 4:07PM
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The glue boards work wonders & you can get really cheap ones at Walmart.
Just so you know, a small mouse can flatten themselves out to about the size of a dime to get thru tiny spaces. Learned that somewhere long, long ago. Haven't ever seen them chew thru dry wall but they will enlarge a drywall hole or chew thru wood.
Do you have wild catnip growing up there. We have it down here & have found that if we cut it & lay it along walls (inside or out) and let it dry, it deters the mice. It is not a sure fire solution, but it sure helps. Has cut our rate of mice in my husbands shop (he leaves doors open all the time) to just a few over the winter instead of 20-30 every winter...we are rural w/crop fields nearby.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2009 at 10:16PM
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