Vancouver has seen a huge spike in rodent activity over the past two years. This was greatly impacted by the “All Green” refuse program and the significant jump in construction. While this is a great idea on paper, it has been poorly executed that have been set by the city programs. At OnSite Pest Control, we specialize in mouse removal and mouse proofing.
While mice are from the same family as rats and other larger rodents, they have unique characteristics that make them a challenging house pest. There are over 20 species of mice, however the only one that tends to encounter humans and their dwellings is the common house mouse. Similar to squirrels, mice are very good at maneuvering in and around obstacles and breed at an exponential rate.
The pest ranges in colour from light brown to dark grey with a lighter belly and feet. It has oversized ears, a pointed face, and a nearly hairless tail. It is quite small, weighing no more than 1 oz. and is 3 – 4 inches in length. The house mouse is timid and nocturnal preferring to forage for food and scraps overnight. One female mouse usually produces 5 – 7 litters per year, each containing 3 – 14 pups. Mice have a quick gestation period, with babies being born after only 20 days of pregnancy. A mouse will begin reproducing at 2 months old. All these facts mean that, under the right conditions, populations grow quickly and can be difficult to exterminate.
While house mice prefer to consume grains, fruits, and seeds, in truth they are omnivores and will eat anything if they are hungry enough! They also quite enjoy human food scraps. Due to their appetite, house mice are known to be quite destructive, causing extensive damage to crops, small gardens and even building materials. The house mouse builds its small nest, in a quiet confined area, out of materials that it finds in its environment. Mice will nest in any dark place, especially if it is located near a food source.
A mouse’s size is very deceiving. Mice are extremely flexible and are able to squeeze through openings that are no larger than a dime. Their flexibility means Vancouver’s houses and apartments are at risk from mice unless homeowners know to take preventative measures. Mice are excellent acrobats and are capable of climbing and jumping large distances in proportion to the size of their body.
The easiest way to tell if your residence has a mouse, or mice, is by their droppings. Mice can leave up to 36,000 droppings per year! Also, listen for scratching or scuffling sounds between walls. Chewed food packages and building materials are other means of determining if mice have taken up residence in your home. Mice will also leave a dirty ‘rub mark’ on walls they pass by frequently.
Mice cause considerable damage and hazards to the buildings they infest. They eat building materials, including batt and foam insulation, wood, and wiring. Regardless of whether mice eat them, the food products that they rummage through are ruined due to the feces, saliva, and urine that the pests leave behind. Mice and their waste carry viruses like Hantavirus, salmonellosis, and LCMV (Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis Virus). More virus bodies are thought to be shed from dried waste, therefore cleaning it with a broom or vacuum cleaner is hazardous to humans. The preferred method is carefully wetting, then collecting and bagging the droppings while wearing OSHA approved protective equipment.
Like squirrel removal, eradicating a mouse infestation from your home can be difficult and time consuming. It is much easier for Vancouver residents to be vigilant in making sure that one mouse doesn’t turn into an infestation with these tips:
Extermination and mice removal falls into two categories. For the occasional rodent, physically killing or trapping the mouse is an unpleasant but humane option. For an infestation, there are several chemical methods available. However, due to the ingenuity of the rodents and application methods of the chemical, it might be in your best interest to call in a professional team before more breeding occurs.
Mice and rat control procedures consist of an initial service that includes isolating the points of entry and sealing them, while placing strategic baits and traps in the areas of activity. Our technicians follow up with the homeowner until all rodent activity has ceased. All OnSite Mouse Removal Services are backed by a 6 month warranty.