Mice in the attic


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Old 10-26-22, 10:47 PM
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Mice in the attic

The Mr.'s has 2 small bird feeders that she put up on the arbor which sits at the end of the patio which is around 25' away from the house.

Within the last 5 days, caught a mouse in snap trap in attic, saw 2 mice running around the perimeter of the foundation (outside) in the general area of the feeders, and just tonight, awaken by scratchy noise in the corner of the room.

I've expressed my concern for all the seed that falls being a magnet but she is not convinced.

I'll let her read your comments!

What do you think, a contributor or not?
 
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Old 10-27-22, 03:23 AM
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I get mice in my attic most every fall/winter. Snap traps take care of them in short order. We don't have a bird feeder or anything that you'd think would be attract them. I figure they are just looking for a warmer home than the barn or outside. I don't recall ever seeing a mouse around the exterior of my house so the bird feed could be an attractant.
 
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Old 10-27-22, 05:53 AM
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Bird seed, like all pet and animal feed, especially on the ground, will attract rodents from mice on up to opossums, raccoons, etc. I've seen rodent burrows in the perimeter of structures of which the occupants were feeding on nearby birdseed. Rats living underneath dog houses is not unusual, either. When dog is asleep they venture out to eat food remnants, drink water, etc.
 
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Old 10-27-22, 06:42 AM
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When we had bird feeders I found several caches of seed in our crawl space.
 
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Old 10-27-22, 07:31 AM
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We live in the woods and battling mice is a constant job. We have several feeders, and I do sometimes find seed caches inside; usually in the garage. But more often we find acorns and other tree nuts. I have rodent bait stations around the outside of the house, and snap traps around inside, mostly in the basement, attic, and garage. We get a couple of mice inside each year...usually in the fall, and despite my best efforts to seal up any openings to the outside.

So the feeders might be attracting mice, but chances are you will have them even without feeders as they are everywhere outside and will seek a nice warm nest for the winter. There's no lack of other food sources for them. And, at least around here, the feeders attract smaller birds, which attract hawks and owls, which are also happy to feed on any mice they see.

One thing you could do..put a drop platform below the feeder(s) (just a round or square flat surfaces mounted to whatever supports the feeders). I have a 3' diameter piece of polycarbonate under our feeders. This catches most of the dropped seeds, and some birds prefer eating off a flat surface and will consume the dropped seeds. Plus it makes it easy to clean up the mess when filling the feeders.
 
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Old 10-27-22, 09:31 AM
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At my vacation house that is unoccupied (by humans) in winter...

Some mice are smart...

I found a seed cache in the barn of a model train layout.

And some are not...

I found two desiccated bodies in a 5 gallon crock that had a 1.25 inch opening at the neck and is about 20 inches tall with a smooth inside surface.
 
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Old 10-27-22, 09:51 AM
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If you never had mice before, it's not unreasonable to assume the feeder is responsible, but I don't think it's that simple. I suspect you had mice in the area forever in wood piles, trees, and bushes, under decks and porches and inside sheds an other outbuildings.

The feeder, however, is probably allowing them to find an easy source of food so they could focus on making more mice.
 
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Old 10-28-22, 05:10 AM
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Appreciate the feedback, I think she's convinced. I also had to remind her that the little piles of seed that get put out all around the house are not helping the situation.

Just like the birds that are attracted to the feeder, so are all the other small creatures.

I'm making her set and pick up the snap traps, that seems to have a more chilling reality!
 
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Old 10-28-22, 05:20 AM
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I'm making her set and pick up the snap traps, that seems to have a more chilling reality!
Don't think that would work with my wife, she'd be quick to remind me that's my job. Any chilling reality would be her attitude towards me if I made her do it.
 
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Old 10-29-22, 07:51 AM
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If trapping outside, make sure birds don't see the traps, killing the birds will add complication to the mix.
 
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Old 11-06-22, 01:00 AM
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Wrote a long post and browser crashed. Anyway, here we go again.

When I bought my house in 2001, there was no signs of rodents. By 2009, the city got rid of a large field behind my house and put in a park and built homes. Since then, rats and mice came out like 10 folds. Making it worst, my neighbors have dogs so the rats would steal dog food and bring over to my property.

They never have entered my house for the exceptions they would enter the garage and attic. I plugged up the many entries in the garage, including the AC hoses running into the house from the condenser, but somehow, they were still entering my garage. One summer, the smell of dead rodents were yuck. As for my attic, they would party each winter.

Because I do not like to see dead animals, I don't like to use snap traps or glue traps. I have tried almost everything, including peppermint, strobe lights, etc... Nothing seems to work.

By 2015, I was desperate and decided to use an ultrasonic device in the garage. The first few bought on Amazon were all fakes. My brother told me to buy the real Riddex from BB&B. After that, there were no longer signs of rodents in the garage. The ultrasonic device is plugged into a circuit where the wiring is in metal conduit. The metal conduits are exposed to the entire garage, running along the beams. I am not sure if this has helped bounce the electromagnetic waves or whatever the science but it seems to have been working. I store dry food out there and also throw out the trash in a temporary uncovered trash bin in the garage. I would empty this uncovered trash bin usually in the morning or when I open the garage. Again I have not seen them or signs of them anymore. Is the garage entry proof? Definitely NOT. They can still easily enter where the roof meets the eaves if they really want to but they have not. There are still lots of them outside because I see them on my security cameras.

I know lots of people don't believe in the ultrasonic devices but my results above seems to be working for me. Not sure what the science is, but the rodent activities in the garage has ceased. It would be hilarious if I see them tomorrow after this post.

As for the attic, I was still having issue with them in the attic up until 2019. I do not want to plug the ultrasonic devices in the attic, concern of fire hazards. My brother told me to cut a hole at the mouth of a bucket, large enough for rats and mice to enter. We would run garden wire through rodent blocks and leave them next to a bowl of peanuts, sunflower seeds, etc...in my backyard. Then we would put the bucket over this food stash and placed several bricks on top of the bucket. This would prevent cats, raccoons, opossums, etc... from lifting the bucket and getting to the rodent blocks.

This seems to have helped for the last 3 years in controlling the population outside. The activities in the attic has dropped by 95% for the last 3 winters. BTW... The rodents would always eat the JT Eaton blocks before the TomCat blocks.

I only do this starting in the late fall to late spring. It is way too hot in the attic during summer so I am not concern about them during the summer and early fall. Usually before winter starts, they would eat large amount of blocks, easily 20 blocks in 2 weeks. By mid winter, I have noticed the blocks are untouched and this seems to be a sign that the population has been controlled.

After using up all of the rodent blocks, my brother told me to mix Baking Soda with Corn Muffin Mix. He shared that this is supposed to be better and more cost effective compared to rodent blocks. The JT Eaton has doubled in price during the pandemic.

Anyway, thought I share my above experience.

Right now, I am experiencing a new rodent issue and that is finding peanut shells on top of an engine for one of my vehicles parked outside.
 
 

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