Reasons For Mice Avoiding Traps And Their Solutions
Even the best-laid traps will not catch mice! There are numerous reasons for it, from incorrect locations to insufficient number of traps. You may become frustrated with your failure to catch mice and rats in your home using mousetraps so you give up, sort of. You just allow them to be the pests that they are yet continue with your plan.
But why continue with an ineffective method when you can change it and address the mice infestation issue? Here are the common reasons why mice and rats are avoiding your traps and the steps that can be done to resolve it.
Certain Scents Are Keeping Them Away
Mice use their strong sense of smell in navigating their way even in near-total darkness, thanks in part to their whiskers. This ability is among the reasons they can survive in most environments, even avoid their natural predators in the wild. Their great sense of smell also allows them to distinguish scents more effectively than humans can.
They use their sense of smell in detecting even the tiniest amount of scent left behind by a human on mousetraps and baits. If mice detect your human smell on the mousetraps and bait, then they will avoid them. This is true even when the baits are their favorite food or the baits are great materials for building their nests.
The bottom line: Don’t leave your scent on the traps and baits! You should always use disposable gloves, whether latex gloves or plastic gloves used for gardening, when setting the traps and placing the baits. You will also have an easier time washing your hands afterwards.
Mice are also adept at detecting possible threats from the traps. If they smell the remains of dead mice on the traps, they will also avoid the traps since they will realize that death awaits them in these places. You should then remove dead mice caught in the traps and wash the traps, if possible, before using them again to catch live mice.
Again, be sure to use disposable gloves when handling mice, whether dead or alive, for safety reasons. You don’t want your skin to come in direct contact with dead mice since these carry pathogens. You will also appreciate the extra layer of protection that gloves provide when you’re removing live mice from traps.
When you’re making homemade baits, such as peanut butter mixed with dry cement mix and formed into pea-sized balls, you must also wear disposable gloves for this reason. You don’t want to leave your scent on the baits, not to mention that you can quickly wash off the bait from your hands.
Mice also have excellent hearing than humans! They can hear high-frequency sounds that humans can’t hear. They will also avoid areas where humans gather so you won’t see them running around in well-lighted areas during the daylight hours.
Smarts Are on Their Side
Well, mice aren’t smarter than humans, of course, but studies have shown they are clever creatures. They are known to be playful, curious and capable of learning new things, thanks partly to their excellent memory. They may not have excellent eyesight but once they know the easiest route into your house, such as a gap in the vinyl siding or a hole in the foundation, they won’t forget it.
They can also find alternative routes in case their old routes aren’t available anymore. This is one of the reasons why sealing off the cracks, gaps and holes in your home before setting the traps is vital to success. But that’s another story.
Mice can also communicate with each other through squeaks and scents. They can then tell other mice about the traps laid in their travel paths and, thus, avoid them.
The bottom line: You have to be smarter than the mice if you want to defeat them! You should choose the best mousetraps and place them in areas where they are most likely to travel. These include along the walls and baseboards, near their entry points and in areas where they usually gather.
Mice are also always alert for good reasons. They have plenty of natural predators, particularly cats and large birds, as well as the danger that comes from living with humans. They are always cautious even when they are feeding, an alert attitude that keeps them alive longer.
What does it mean for setting traps? Mice react almost instantly when the trap springs into place and, thus, they can avoid being caught. But if you place a few mousetraps in a group, there’s a higher chance that these traps will catch several mice at once.
Even if a mouse can escape one trap, it likely won’t escape the other traps nearby.
Getting rid of mice infestation isn’t a one-day job, not even for experienced professional pest exterminators. It takes days of planning and waiting for the mice to actually take the bait.
You must then be patient. But once the issue is addressed, you will have an easier time preventing their comeback.