Mice are incredibly resourceful as they can quickly adapt to new environments. Small in size, these pests are looking for a warm place to shelter and provide a food source. If these rodents make it indoors, they can cause significant damage to your home. Here we list the major signs of mice in your home and how you can prevent them.
Seeing holes, tears, and gnaw marks is a major sign that mice are indoors. You can typically see this damage in bedding, clothing, fabrics, and other materials. Mice will use these shredded fabrics to help build their nests, usually located in dark, secluded areas. These pests will also chew and leave gnaw marks on inedible materials such as wood, plastic, cables, and electrical wiring.
A more obvious sign of a mouse infestation is hearing noises throughout the night. Mice can fit through holes and openings smaller than their bodies. Using their ability to fit through the smallest hole, they will often use the spaces between joists to travel from one part of the house to the other. If a mouse has gotten inside the walls, you’ll often hear scratching or scrabbling noises.
Another alarming sign that a mouse is inside is seeing their feces. Mouse droppings are around three to six millimeters or ¼ inch in length. They typically resemble small grains of rice and sometimes can be mistaken for cockroach droppings. If you see mouse droppings, it’s best to carefully pick them up with gloves and place them in a sealed plastic bag to ensure they don’t release bacteria or virus particles.
To help prevent mice, place the preventative measures below throughout your house.
- Seal any cracks and holes on the exterior of your home with caulk.
- Keep your basements, crawlspaces, and attics clean, decluttered, and dry.
- Clean up any spills and crumbs immediately, vacuuming and sweeping often.
- Don’t leave food out overnight, including pet food outside.
If you notice any signs of mice inside your house, consider reaching out to your local pest control provider, where they will provide you with the best plan of action.
Rodents are one of the most resourceful pests when it comes to getting into your home. Mice and rats can squeeze through the tiniest cracks to gain access and they require very little space to travel inside. Rodents seek shelter indoors, especially during the fall and winter months as they go in search of warmth, food and water. While a rodent sighting can be scary enough, these pests also pose serious hazards to your home and your health. They can gnaw through cardboard, paper, and even electrical wires, putting you at risk for fires. They are known to carry bacteria, like salmonella and hantavirus, and can contaminate your food, kitchen surfaces, and other areas of your home. Even rodent droppings are dangerous – helping spread these pathogens to you and your family.
The first step in rodent control in and around your home is to prevent them from getting inside in the first place. Here are 10 easy tips you can use for preventing mice and rats:
- Use doorsweeps and screens on windows and doors. Make sure to keep them in good repair and replace them when needed.
- Use screens on vents and chimneys, as well.
- Seal up any cracks and holes on the exterior of your home with caulk or steel wool, especially around utility pipes.
- Store food in airtight containers. Make sure to empty your trash often.
- Clean up any spills and crumbs immediately. Don’t leave food out overnight, including pet food. Sweep, mop, and vacuum on a regular basis.
- Keep basements, crawlspaces, and attics clean, decluttered and dry. Use plastic storage containers instead of cardboard when possible.
- Check foundations and windows and replace any loose mortar and weatherstripping.
- Check for sources of moisture and eliminate them (e.g. leaky pipes, clogged drains, clogged gutters). Make sure downspouts are directing water away from foundations. Consider installing a gutter guard system.
- Inspect everything before bringing it into your home including grocery bags, boxes, packages, furniture, and appliances.
- Keep piles of firewood elevated off the ground and at least 20 feet from your home. Keep grass mowed and shrubbery trimmed back so it isn’t touching the house.
If you do find signs of rodents in your home, best practice is to remove them and prevent re-entry as soon as possible. This is best accomplished by a professional pest control company who can not only eliminate the nuisance pests, but help identify nesting sites and points of entry to help prevent reinfestation in the future.
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Rodents are one of the most common pests that come into our homes in the winter. Rodents are in search of 3 things – food, water, and shelter – and they can find all 3 of them in and around our homes. Squirrels, raccoons, rats, and mice are some of the most frequently seen rodents in the colder months. Rodents can cause significant damage to property and can also be a big health risk to humans. Prevention is critical in managing and preventing an infestation of rodents. Check out these tips to keep the rodents out this winter:
- Put A Lid On Your Trash: If possible, use trashcans made of metal with snug fitting lids. If you must use plastic, make sure there are no holes in it.
- Put Up Your Pet Food: Store pet food and birdseed in glass or metal containers with tight lids. Make sure to remove them at night and store them away until morning. Make sure to pick up any fallen fruit or nuts off the ground outside your home, as well. Remove standing water from bird feeders.
- Elevate Your Compost: Raise your compost container at least 1 foot off the ground.
- Keep Your Garage Clean: Rodents like to eat lawn seed, tulip bulbs, bone meal, and other items frequently used in gardening. Make sure they are stored in glass or metal containers with tight lids. Keep firewood a good distance from the house. Organize and store boxes in the garage off the ground to eliminate nesting places.
- Clean The Kitchen: Keep food stored in tightly sealed containers. Clean up spilled food and crumbs nightly.
- Keep Your Home Maintained: Make sure openings around your home are properly sealed. Keep your gutters clear of debris and water. Screen your attic vents. Keep screens on windows and doors in good repair and replace when needed.
- Call A Pro: If you suspect you have a rodent problem, call a professional pest control company or a professional wildlife removal company who can evaluate your home and provide you with a comprehensive treatment plan.