Signs of mice? Sometimes it not obvious

Signs of mice in your home is an obvious reason to have a pest control service.  However, most homeowners think the only sign they’re looking for is droppings.  This couldn’t be further from the truth.  If you can believe it there’s a much bigger sign and it may be more disgusting.

Droppings are one of the sure signs of mice

I think we’ll all be in agreement when I say that having mouse droppings (droppings are fecal matter) in a utensil drawer is gross.  Yet many people put up with it for years before they call a professional.  This may sound hard to believe, but there are thousands of homes in Connecticut that have droppings in utensil drawers, cabinets, basements and attics right now.  If this is your home you need to do something.

Mouse fecal matter and mice themselves are responsible for hantavirus, salmonella an other diseases that effect people.  This is why mice are called commensal rodents which means living with man.  Throughout history rodents have gotten people sick and destroyed more food than many of the common reasons you can think of for considering something contaminated.  Do you have mice in your kitchen that have contaminated food or eating utensils?  There really is no way of being sure.

Rodent body oils are the second sign of mice that people often miss

At the beginning of this post I promised to show everyone something that exists in homes with moderate to severe rodent issues.  The picture

Stains from mice on a basment wall
Mice are running around this beam and leaving a clear sign of their presence

to the right was taken in a home in Southbury, CT with a large mouse problem.  If you look at the wood framing there is a dark brown stain that wraps around the beam.  This “stain” is called sebum and I’m willing to bet it’s somewhere in your home as well.

Sebum as it’s called is a body oil that rodents leave behind on frequently traveled areas.  In this particular case it appears as though the mice are defying gravity and walking sideways on the wall.  The truth is that this is exactly what they’re doing.  A mouse has sharp nails that will grab onto any rough surface and allow this to happen.   Go to your basement and see if your home is effected by mice, do you have sebum?.

You have mice.  How should you be cleaning up after them?

When cleaning up after mice care must be taken.  In order to do it properly the following procedure should be followed:

  1. Wet the droppings down with an antibacterial liquid spray to prevent causing fossilized droppings from becoming airborne
  2. Wear protective gloves and a face mask if not in a ventilated area
  3. Wipe the droppings up with a cloth. Do not vacuum
  4. Discard towels in a bag and throw the entire bag in the garbage
  5. Clean counters with antibacterial wipes regularly

Having mice is certainly no laughing matter.  As a pest control professional I find it disheartening that more homeowners don’t take it seriously.  Most pest control technicians will tell you that mice aren’t just a cold weather problem any longer.  As a business owner I can back this up with the fact that it’s only portion of our business that grows yearly at a double digit rate.

If you have mice in your home Envirocare Pest Control can be reached at 1-888-879-6481.