Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Let's get down to the basics. Mice are pests. They consume our food, contaminate our living spaces with their feces and cause food poisoning from the bacteria said feces contains. They can carry pathogens that spread diseases to humans, and they cause damage to structures with their constant gnawing. They are responsible for a considerable amount of electrical fires that happen due to the chewing through of electrical wires in the attics and walls.
Do you have and Infestation? Mice will nest in anything nice and soft including, but not limited to: shredded newspaper, clothing, fiberglass insulation, and fur from taxidermy or anything that might be available to make their nest. Finding droppings in cabinets, drawers, or gnaw marks can indicate where the mice have been. Usually they are more active at night, but can be seen during the daytime.
What does the mouse look like? An adult mouse can be anywhere from ½ an ounce to an ounce in weight – pretty small, huh? They are about 5 to 8 inches long – this is including the about 4 inch tail. They have big ears and small eyes, and the coat is usually light gray to dark brown, usually in variation of colors thereof. You can tell the male (buck) predominately by the rather large testicles (compared to the rest of the body) that they have, which can actually be retracted (hidden) in their body. The female (doe) will have 5 pair of mammary glands which the buck will not.
Mice usually have a litter of pups containing 6 which are born around 21 days after mating. The female doe can roughly have about 10 litters a year. The pups can be mature mice as early as 6 weeks depending upon the environment. The math is staggering when you think of how many mice can be born in a year from the start of one pair of mice!
Prevention and Control starts with sanitation and exclusion which is followed up with pest control using traps, glue boards and baiting. Proper placement of pest control measures is key to reducing the populations and making sure that the family and pets remain safe while controlling the mice. Reducing harborage areas will also help to reduce the population.