Mice are among the most common household pests in the Sacramento area. There are a few reasons for this. The first (and perhaps the most important) reason, is that mice love living with us. One mouse species is so drawn to living with humans that there are no known wild populations of this species in the entire world. Not surprisingly, it is called the house mouse. If house mice get into your home, they can present a significant threat. You wouldn't think so by looking at one, though.
The body of a house mouse is only between 2 ½ to 3 ¾ inches long, but just one of these little rodents can burn your home to the ground by chewing on wires and gas lines. Mice can also damage your home and belongings as well as spread diseases and parasites. It is best to keep these tiny animals out of your home. That's what we're going to talk about today. The secret to effective mouse management is understanding the behaviors and abilities of these animals. Here's what every Sacramento Region homeowner should know about mice.
Mice Are Food Motivated
The most important thing you should know about mice is that they are food motivated. Mice eat 15 to 20 times a day. When a mouse is unable to eat, it will go into a low-energy state called torpor. In laboratory studies, mice have been observed going into torpor in as little as six hours when they are deprived of food.
How Can You Use This Fact To Keep Mice Out Of Your Home?
- Keep exterior garbage contained and protected. A mouse can find many meal options in a bag of garbage.
- Move bird feeders to at least 20 feet from the exterior of your home. Seeds are an ideal food source for mice.
- Use fencing to keep mice from getting into your garden areas and from eating fruit off your trees and bushes. Fruits and vegetables are an obvious food source for mice.
If you remove food sources around your home, mice will go elsewhere to find their 15 to 20 meals a day.
Mice Can Squeeze Through Small Gaps
Do you know that a mouse can squeeze through any hole that it can fit its skull through? For most mice, this is a hole about the size of a dime. When considering exclusions such as applying caulking, expanding foam, and other products, you need to seal even the smallest of entry points.
How Can You Use This Fact To Prevent Mice From Getting Inside?
- Do a thorough inspection of your exterior doors and replace weather stripping, door sweeps, and screens that need to be replaced. Once you've done this, examine the frame and use a caulking gun to fill in any gaps or holes.
- Examine your foundation, even the portions that are difficult to inspect. The area of your foundation underneath a deck or porch is a likely spot for mice to look for entry. Also inspect utilities closely. Wire conduits and plumbing pipes can have small gaps that are sufficient to allow mice into your home.
- Examine the wood of your home, particularly your sole plates. If there are any portions that are water damaged and rotting, they may have gaps or vulnerabilities that rodents could exploit.
Mice Chew On Stuff
A rodent will be a rodent. If there is one thing you can count on with mice, it is the fact that they will chew on building materials. Mice have incisors that never stop growing. They must be filed down. As a mouse explores your property, it is likely to chew on wood and other materials.
How Can You Use This Fact To Avoid Rodent Damage?
If you find a spot that mice seem to be gnawing on, you can prevent this by applying metal flashing. You can also prevent damage (and potential entry) by altering habitat conditions:
- Move objects away from your home's exterior.
- Remove weeds and other unnecessary vegetation from your landscaping.
- Remove leaves, sticks, and other organic debris.
Mice Reproduce Like Crazy
When it comes to breeding, rabbits have nothing on mice. One female mouse can have as many as 56 pups in a single year. The female offspring of that one female mouse can then have pups of their own. A female mouse can grow to the age of maturation in as little as four weeks, depending on the conditions.
How Can You Use This Fact To Get Control Of Mice?
If you have a random mouse exploring your property every once in a while, you can deter it by removing food sources, applying exclusion techniques, and protecting vulnerabilities; but when mice are reproducing in a location near your home, you can have a lot more than one mouse exploring your exterior. If this is occurring, it is best to contact a pest professional and request rodent trapping services.
Do You Live In The Sacramento Region?
If you do, contact HomeShield Pest Control for professional mouse control or mouse exclusion services in Sacramento. Our friendly and experienced pest control professionals use tamper-resistant traps and general pest maintenance to eliminate mouse populations and keep mice out of Sacramento Region homes. There is no better way to get control of mice. For more information about our pest and rodent control plans for Sacramento and the surrounding area, get in touch with us today!