Ok, maybe your roommate really didn’t eat those chocolate chip cookies you had been craving all day. The small bites in the box could suggest another culprit: mice. You mean those weren’t raisins on the floor the other day? Mice infestation can be a huge problem. Since mice reproduce five to ten times a year, with five or six in each litter, two mice can quickly turn into hundreds. So, if you don’t like the idea of things running across your feet when you get up to go to the bathroom at 2 am, here are some tips for getting rid of mice.
Identifying the Problem
Detecting a mouse problem can be difficult since mice are nocturnal. However, finding mouse droppings in your pantry, cupboards, or anywhere else you keep food – between the sofa cushions? – is a sure sign you’ve got mice in your apartment. The evidence might suggest you have only a few, but where there’s one, there’s likely to be many. Look for small holes – it only has to be a quarter of an inch wide for a mouse to scurry through – around plumbing or inside cabinets. For a temporary fix, plug these holes up with steel wool to prevent the mice from entering your apartment.
Giving the Mice the Boot
There are many different solutions for getting rid of mice in an apartment. Traps, poison, and various other home remedies have proven effective in certain situations. It’s up to you to decide which best suits your style.
The majority of people feel that traps are the best solution to mice in an apartment. They allow you to locate the mouse once it’s dead, rather than having to follow a foul smell to find the victim. And many people feel that they are more humane than other options. In spring loaded traps, mice are killed instantly rather than dying over a period of days. Some traps, however, such as glue traps, rely on the mice starving to death. And the disposal of mice from glue traps is typically not the most pleasant thing. So if you’re faint of heart, it might be wise to look towards another solution. Havahart traps allow the mice to be caught live, and then released. Maybe they wouldn’t be such a nuisance if they were running on a wheel in a cage.
There are a few reasons why poison can be a bad idea. For households with pets or small children, using poison is a safety and health risk. If Fluffy the cat got a hold of a dead mouse, she could be a goner as well. And if you’ve got a baby crawling around on the ground, sticking his fingers in his mouth, you probably don’t want poison lying around. Also, mice don’t just drop dead after ingesting poison, so it can be hard to locate the mice once they’ve died. Often times it’s necessary to let a smell develop over a few days, and then follow the stench until you come upon the dead rodents. Sounds pleasant, huh?
Many people try to drive mice away using foul odors. Sounds crazy! They’re the stinky ones, right? But essential oils such as peppermint, mothballs, ammonia and onion have been known to drive mice away. Some people even say fox urine will send your mice packin’ because the fox is a natural predator of mice. Peppermint oil sure sounds more pleasing to the other residents of the apartment: you!