It depends on the kind of mouse you have. White-footed mice (also known as wood mice) are a common rodent found in the northeastern United States. These mice are named for their white feet which contrast with their dark gray coat. They are very small, only 3.5-4 inches long not including the length of the tail, which is often as long as the rest of the mouse’s body. They are primarily nocturnal which is why you will hear scuttering in your walls, ceilings, or attic at night. They can multiply quickly so if you do hear signs of mice, best to call in a mouse exterminator immediately. Deer mice, similar to white-footed mice, are a common rodent found in the northeastern United States. Deer mice have deer-like brown and white fur, while white footed mice take their name from the hue of their paws. Unfortunately, these names don’t help with identification since deer mice have white feet as well, and white footed mice can also be brown and white. Deer mice can be easily identified by their tails, which are always bicolored – usually half brown and half white. House mice are typically dusty gray with cream-colored bellies. Fur color varies from light brown to dark gray depending on the mouse’s location. House mice have four legs and a round shaped body. Their muzzles are pointed, and their ears are large with some hair. House mice range from 2.5 to 3.75 inches long. Their tails are usually 2.75 to 4 inches long – usually as long as their body is. They have large ears and their droppings are pointed, about the size of a grain of rice. In nature, mice prefer to eat cereal and seeds, but they will also eat insects, nuts and fruits.
How Did I get mice
Most mice prefer to nest in dark, secluded areas and often build nests out of paper products, cotton, packing materials, wall insulation, and fabrics. Mice are nocturnal, but they can be spotted in your house or business during the day. Some mice are very inquisitive and tend to curiously investigate changes in their habitats. They will often change their established runways for this reason. Mice only need a hole the size of a dime to squeeze through to get into any building and your home is no different. If you have cracks and crevices in your foundation, drains that are not properly sealed, screens with tears in them, etc., then deer mice can get in.
What Problems Do mice Cause
The two main problems mice cause are their ability to quickly reproduce and the diseases they can bring with them. House mice are very social. They organize themselves in social hierarchies with one male dominating lower-ranking males and a large number of females in a given territory. Mature male mice are socially compatible with related mice, but they are hostile and aggressive towards strangers. White-footed mice are generally not social animals with the exception of breeding season – March to October. Since they can have 2 to 4 litters of 2 to 6 mice, that can add up to an infestation pretty quickly. Deer mice prefer warm environments where they can nest which could mean attics where their waste can ruin insulation and ultimately cost money on energy bills. Deer mice are also a serious medical concern because they can transmit the potentially fatal virus that causes Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome. This virus is mainly transmitted by the inhalation of dust particles contaminated with the urine, feces, or saliva of infected deer mice.
HOW do i get rid of mice
All mice can squeeze through a hole as small as a dime. Seal any cracks larger than ¼ inch wide around your home to prevent deer mice from entering. Pay special attention to areas where utilities and pipes enter the home. Have loose mortar and weather stripping replaced around the basement foundation and windows where mice could sneak inside.
Be sure to keep food in sealed, rodent-proof containers to ensure you’re not attracting intruders. This will help with more than just mice. Also make sure your home and storage areas are clean and dry and dispose of all garbage cans frequently. These types of sanitation changes will help keep away mice, rats, cockroaches, and flies, too. Keep areas clear of clutter and store boxes off the floor. Keep shrubs and tree branches cut back and away from the house, which will also help keep squirrels off your roof. Avoid storing pet food or bird seed in garages or storage sheds and if you do, be sure it’s kept in a sealed container instead of just rolling down the top of the bag. Have basements, attics, outbuildings, and rarely used cars/RVs professionally inspected for signs of mice.
All pests look for food, water, and shelter. It’s very important to remove access to these items to prevent an infestation. Clean up crumbs and spills, and store food (including pet food) up off the floor and in sealed, hard containers with tight-fitting lids. Fix dripping faucets and leaking pipes. Keep living areas clean and uncluttered. Keep yards and vacant lots maintained by mowing and utilizing regular trash pickup. Be sure to share any mice sighting information with neighbors. Mice rarely just stay in one place.