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paulraphael

Getting Rid of Mice in the Kitchen

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Ok, so I have mice.

It's hard not to ... I live in a civil war-era brewery in one of the filthier corners of Brooklyn.

The long term plan is to block off the points of entry with steel wool, metal plates, whatever. Short term I'm trying to trap them. Trying really hard. Actually, it's gotten personal.

For the last month I've been the straight man in a cartoon. The little bastards (I once thought they were cute) have outsmarted me every step of the way.

Here's what I've tried:

-Live catch traps. In a month I caught a total of one mouse. I let him go out on the street, a dozen paces from my gate. He hit the pavement, turned around, and sprinted back into my courtyard. I headed him off and then he disappeared ... probably into my pantry.

-Cat. Once a competent mouser, in spite of looking more like a throw pillow than a predator, he's made it clear that he's retired.

-Conventional traps. I put them out with cheese and peanut butter at night. In the morning the trap is still set but the cheese and peanut butter are gone. These are not traps, they are feeders.

-Glue traps. Supposedly the most barbaric of all. But in the morning the peanut butter is gone (see note on feeders, above). But this time there are little paw prints in the glue, placed there no doubt to mock me.

Suggestions?

And if this is one of those candid camera shows, I'll eventually get paid ... right?


Notes from the underbelly

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I would approach the problem as follows. 1) You live in a brewery and thus have beer to spare. 2) You live in Brooklyn and thus random shotgun blasts are not likely to be reported to the police.

Perhaps a bounty in beer for each mouse? My hunting dog and I can be at your place by sunrise. Have pug, will travel.

Or if you don't have kids and pets around the place I'd suggest poison. YOu probably don't one mouse you have tons. Poison tends to wipe out whole nests as the mice eat the dead poisoned mouse.

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I have to suggest poisoned bait as well - easily acquired at your local home improvement sort of place. As long as you are not harming pets or beneficial predators that eat mice. You want to keep those guys around.

It can get quite stinky. Revoltingly stinky. Think carrion in closed place, because that is what it is.

I think we have our rodent issue addressed - remarkable considering store fronts and dumpsters a block away and empty lots west and south.

Catch and release does not work unless you are willing to drive at least a half hour away. Even then, they are making babies that will eventually populate your living space.

Outside of that, maybe get a very young kitty from the shelter. They seem to be very aggressive when they are little - older cats become well accustomed to the food bowl.

Remind me to recount the saga of the Iguana situation some time. Lucky you, just mice. :biggrin:

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Paul, I'd get a good cat.

My cat is useless against rural Canadian mice, so she'd probably be killed by Brooklyn brewery mice. That's why we use traps, with excellent results. They're plastic and snap shut when the perp touches the peanut butter on the trigger. Sometimes they get bludgeoned to death but usually they're alive.


Peter Gamble aka "Peter the eater"

I just made a cornish game hen with chestnut stuffing. . .

Would you believe a pigeon stuffed with spam? . . .

Would you believe a rat filled with cough drops?

Moe Sizlack

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Paul, I'd get a good cat.

My cat is useless against rural Canadian mice, so she'd probably be killed by Brooklyn brewery mice. That's why we use traps, with excellent results. They're plastic and snap shut when the perp touches the peanut butter on the trigger. Sometimes they get bludgeoned to death but usually they're alive.

So, what do you do to dispose of the little, living, micestrocities?

Good cats are really the bomb. Introduce a predator.

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The electricution traps seem to work darn well, they seem to be the last one to figure out they're dead. Dab of peanut butter in the well and blammo :-) Since they merely have to set foot in the tunnel,they really can't steal the bait

HTH

Jorge

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Aromatic chocolate is a better bait than traditional cheese...

I'd be worried that it wasn't 'merely' a mouse problem.

Bigger game steal bait from mouse traps...


"If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch ... you must first invent the universe." - Carl Sagan

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The electricution traps seem to work darn well, they seem to be the last one to figure out they're dead.  Dab of peanut butter in the well and blammo :-) Since they merely have to set foot in the tunnel,they really can't steal the bait

HTH

Jorge

Coolness. Is that a plug in or battery powered execution instrument? Sounds honestly humane.

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The electricution traps seem to work darn well, they seem to be the last one to figure out they're dead.  Dab of peanut butter in the well and blammo :-) Since they merely have to set foot in the tunnel,they really can't steal the bait

HTH

Jorge

Coolness. Is that a plug in or battery powered execution instrument? Sounds honestly humane.

Click here to Zap those invaders!

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Last week we heard scratching in the wall. We set traps in the basement and every night for the last 5 nights( except last night when we set 2 traps) we've caught a dead mice.

We use a trap that is reusable and you dont need to see the mouse head( just the tail). With 1 flick of the lever, you dispose of the mouse into the trash and reset the trap. I bought them at Target for around 4.27 each.

click


Edited by CaliPoutine (log)

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When cats get old, they are no longer interested in knocking themselves out over a stupid mouse. That's what they tell me, anyway. I've seen it play out, as various kitties who were once murderous maniacs barely open an eye to see what all the skittling and scratching is about.

I think getting a young cat would be the simplest answer to the problem, but you haven't indicated you're interested in that.

I vote for whatever's quick and fairly painless. Use poison as a last resort. If several of them eat the stuff and then crawl into places you can't reach, and die, you're in for at least a couple months of having a smelly house, and if it gets bad enough, smelly clothes as a result.

Whatever you do, don't use poison AND traps. The poison is a blood thinner... guess what happens when the trap springs? Mouse blood everywhere.

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Thank you for one of the more entertaining threads in recent memory.

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I suggest a young daschund from your local pound or rescue site I adopted one, not even thinking about my rodent problem, until I saw him go after a mouse. Dog grabbed the mouse, flipped it into the air, and it came down dead! A more humane way I can't imagine, and the dog won't play with the critters the way a cat will... :unsure: (Don't get me wrong, I LOVE cats! :biggrin:)


Edited by judiu (log)

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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Paul, I'd get a good cat.

My cat is useless against rural Canadian mice, so she'd probably be killed by Brooklyn brewery mice. That's why we use traps, with excellent results. They're plastic and snap shut when the perp touches the peanut butter on the trigger. Sometimes they get bludgeoned to death but usually they're alive.

So, what do you do to dispose of the little, living, micestrocities?

Good cats are really the bomb. Introduce a predator.

I'm not proud, but . . . . we have a large green organic waste cart outside for curbside pick-up once a week. Since mice can't get in . . . . at least they get a nice final supper.

Peter Gamble aka "Peter the eater"

I just made a cornish game hen with chestnut stuffing. . .

Would you believe a pigeon stuffed with spam? . . .

Would you believe a rat filled with cough drops?

Moe Sizlack

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We're in a semi-rural location, and an old property with plenty of ingress points, so I've had the same sort of opportunity to work through a lot [just about all] of the available trap types.

Some we lose bait from, some break, some trigger but don't make a clean catch &c.

For us at least, these work, keep on working and don't act as feeders. They never need a litter-box emptied. PB in the bait cup can't easily be removed and the trigger paddle surrounds it. Unequivocally recommended by this satisfied customer - I can't speak for the mice, but there have been no complaints lodged as yet. I've seen copies - I think the Kness Snap-E is the original.

It looks as though they are pretty much the 'uncovered' version of the ones CaliPoutine recommended.

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Plain old-fashioned mouse trap, but bait it with a raisin, which you can firmly stick on, so that the critter can't eat and run without tripping the mechanism. The most interesting mouse trap I've ever seen is the five-gallon pail. It involves a plank which the mouse walks out on to get the bait, the plank then drops and the mouse hits the water and can't get out ... if the water is at the correct level. Good for multiple catches in one night. My most frustrating mouse experience? On a boat, with a cat that loved to hunt, but wouldn't dream of eating a mouse. She'd bring them home alive, play with them a bit, get bored and let them go ... to take up residence in the bilge. We had a trap-line as well as a cat! (This was a cat which once caught a hummingbird ... I chased her down the dock, she jumped up on the deck, opened her mouth, the hummer fell out, shook itself and flew away!)

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My parents used an electronic mouse repellant. It worked so well, it sent all the mice to their neighbour's house, instead. Fortunately, they did not (do not) like their neighbours.

There are different kinds, and it is said some can't be used in spaces with a lot of furniture along the walls, or boxes, but my mother is a pack-rat (no pun intended) extraordinaire, and the type she got worked regardless of how much crap she had along the walls.


Edited by prasantrin (log)

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it's been years still so far nothing has worked and well last week i resort to poisoned grains [made by Bayer pharmaceuticals]. the fieldmice live in my shed [not in the house thank god] so i think it's going to smell in there grrrr.... i don't want to stop feeding my back garden birds. i'm fighting the little disease carriers until the bitter end! :(

i lugged an old fashioned/Chinese rat trap around Guangzhou all day then around 3 airports, and in the planes, then train home. the little bastards spend hours trying to squeeze themselves through the wires. they make a fool of me!!! :(

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If you ever get the situation under control, mint is said to be an effective repellent. When we leave our house in NY I leave dry mint in all over the place. Seems to work as we've had less mice issues when we return.

Death by cat is not quick or painless, I've often thought that would be about the worst way to go. But they are effective!

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A real good trap is a variation on the 5 gallon bucket trap mentioned previous.

You run a rod throught the top onto which you have put some sort of cylinder that will revolve. A pill bottle works. Bait the cylinder with the peanut butter. Run a ram or other device to allow the critter to get up to the rod. They run across the rod to get the treat and roll into the bucket and reach a watery grave at the bottom.

Mousetrap

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I am a ratzapper evangelist. the damn things work amazingly well, and they are by far the most humane of the kill traps. Whatever you do, please do not ever, ever use glue traps.


"All humans are out of their f*cking minds -- every single one of them."

-- Albert Ellis

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Death by cat is not quick or painless, I've often thought that would be about the worst way to go. But they are effective!

Unfortunately, that's true. My last champion mouser learned that if she took her mice to the bathtub, she could fool around all day and they couldn't get away from her. She'd literally nap in one end of the tub while the mouse sat at the other end, waiting to be executed. Also unfortunately, I learned the hard way to check the tub thoroughly before using it myself, since the cat always left me the head and the tail. One morning the shower curtain obscured the 'leftovers'. A slow drain caused a couple of inches of water to build up in the tub during my shower; a dropped bar of soap helped me discover that I'd not checked the tub thoroughly enough. "Freaked out" doesn't begin to describe my state of mind after that; I arrived at work more than an hour late, but with very clean (i.e. repeatedly scrubbed) skin.

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Important advice: please don't use BOTH a cat and mouse poison at the same time. Mouse eats poison; stumbles around with a bad stomach ache; cat catches nauseated mouse; cat dies. This has happened. Pick cat OR poison - you can't have both.

The other night Weasel, my young female Siamese, was playing with her toy mouse (I thought) on the bed while I was reading. It was only when the thing landed on my arm that I realized that a) it wasn't a TOY mouse, and b) it wasn't even a WHOLE mouse. Scream? Did I scream? Oh yeah.

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If you ever get the situation under control...

I think this is the most important thing. Once your home is sealed up against any more meese coming in, then you can eradicate the bastards that are already inside.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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