Along with the rain and the cold, rodent season is upon us. Rats and mice can be a year-round pest problem, but when the wet and chilly weather arrives it sends the critters looking for a warm dry place to call home for the winter.
Once a mouse finds a cozy nesting spot things can get quickly out of hand. A mouse mom can produce five to ten litters per year of five or six pups each litter. The gestation period for a mouse is only 19 – 21 days, and the new mice reach reproductive age within six to ten weeks. Quickly what seems to be just one cozy mouse turns into many cozy mice.
Full grown mice are only 5-7 inches long, including a 3 – 4 inch tail, though tiny these rodents can be responsible for major damage – including gnawing of insulation surrounding electrical and telephone wires (a serious fire hazard) as well as dangerous contamination of food supplies. Mice are known to carry over 200 diseases including salmonella, and leptospirosis, a disease with flu-like symptoms.
Many products on the market for eliminating rodents can have unintended harmful consequences. Poisons can endanger pets or even children, you could also possibly end up with a dead smelly mouse inside your walls or your attic. Electronic signal devices that claim to deter mice, have proven to be ineffective. Some people opt for live traps, but UC Integrated Pest Management guidelines warn that mice capture alive in urban areas should be taken to a veterinarian or Animal Control to be euthanized. If captured in a rural area, a mouse should be transported at least one mile away, to an unpopulated area for release, or the risk of re-infestation is high. Most experts agree that the old-fashioned snap-traps are the best DIY solution as the animal is killed instantly most of the time, it can be easily retrieved and disposed of, and you know that you got it.
As always, a trained, licensed and certified pest-control professional is your safest bet to remove rodents and prevent re-infestation. Pest control professionals are trained to identify entry points into your home so that they can be sealed off, and to recognize signs of mice, rat trails, and nesting locations. For tips on controlling and preventing rat and mice infestation, visit our Rats and Mice page.
At Earth Guard Pest services, our licensed pest control technicians are trained to work with you and your family to find the more effective means of controlling rodent infestations in your specific situation. Contact us today for a free inspection and estimate: 916-457-7605 or [email protected]