"Pic-Of-The-Week" Irises by canesisters
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I have mice in the chicken house. Or . . . I had mice. When I have this frozen pan of water thawed out, I'll be back out there to see if I've caught #11!
I've never caught so many mice out there! They show up every year and I use the Victor traps and kill the filthy vermin (insert Yosemite Sam quote here ).
Usually, they are in the garage, too. Seven mice between the 2 locations has been my previous record. I've made the mistake of leaving seed in the garage - ornamental corn & millet. It is a mistake and I didn't make it this year. Still, I'd better get some traps in the garage and see what will happen.
No poisons. We all know about chickens and mice.
In the coop, I can place the traps in a cage. The chicken wire is no problem for the mice but the chickens can't get in there to the bait. Cheese this year. Those traps with the plastic trip don't work well for my raisins dipped in peanut butter. Peanut butter by itself caught not ONE mouse. I'm using a little piece of mozzarella that I keep in an empty pot when not smearing it all over that yellow plastic. They haven't gotten thru more than a tablespoon of it so far.
Dang mice! I wonder how much of my chicken feed they've eaten.
Last edited by digitS' (01/21/2013 11:09 am)
I recently learned about something called "the Adirondack mousetrap". Not good for the chicken coop, but perfect in some applications (basements, etc.) You take a pail with some water in it, put a soda can with a dowel going through it, across the top of the bucket. You need to make a hole in the bottom of the can and use the other opening. Smear peanut butter on the can. I supply a stick, leaning against the pail for easy access. Mice climb up, and get on the can to eat peanut butter. Once on the can- they can't keep their balance (due to the spinning of the can on the dowel)- and into the water they fall.
I hate to admit how many mice we have caught using this method... No poison and you can catch many mice with one trap.
Steve, I have heard stories of chickens catching and eating mice- but have never witnessed this myself...
Lesa, that sounds like a great idea! A couple years ago I found a poor dead mouse in a dry 5 gallon bucket that died just overnight, probably from exhaustion and dehydration.
Poor little miceys though. Sometimes they just have to go.
I've been having the same problem too recently. I caught 4 already that got in to my bird pen. They seem to have made a hole underneath near my house. I just hope to kill them off and put cement where the holes were. Maybe its the cold weather that drives them in buildings? I think without food or water they'll just die from starvation. That explains why they stay near bird seed.
MICE a never ending battle. Just when I think we may have got them all more arrive! This winter has been much worse than last year. *sigh* I will be telling DH about lesa's cool trap!
I keep the chicken feed on an upside-down bucket. Yes, I know it would be better in a closed metal container. I don't get any holes in the bag if it stays off the floor. The bag seems to be safe.
A bucket is also used for the empty feeder so that if I spill any food, it goes in the bucket & not on the garage floor. Then, the feeder goes back in the coop. I once found a dead mouse in that bucket. No doubt, the mice are eating feed in the coop that the chickens spill. Oh yes, they will catch & fight over a mouse before it is swallowed . . . whole. Blech!, I have problems with rodents and it isn't just from seeing them dead!
I was just looking at ASPCA information about what pet mice eat. Dang. The feed looks the same as what chickens eat! "Mice are curious, charming pets . . . (yeah, yeah) . . . Food runs about $50 a year." THAT is for 3 or 4 pet mice! Sheesh! With 12 the last couple of months . . . Ay yay yay, Lucy! Are you crazy or something!"
I keep all the chicken feed in those big lidded tubs now. So far so good.
Did you know mice can jump reeeeely high?
In our old fixer upper house we had an ongoing mouse problem and my husband was able to suck a mouse up in the shop vac one evening that was unlucky enough to be seen scurrying into the bathroom he was remodeling.( Hence the shop vac.)
We went to bed and lay there awhile listening to a rhythmic scuttly-whump. DH investigated and reported that it was the mouse in the vacuum and he'd deal with it in the morning.
The following morning no mouse was found in the vacuum. Apparently he kept jumping for the hole the hose was attached to and made his escape. Gotta admire determination like that.
Then there was the time when I was 11 or so and found a mama mouse with her babies in the hay shed. So CUTE! Naturally I decided they would be my pets and cobbled a cage together for them to live in. I told no one. Dad wasn't inclined to be sympathetic to mice no matter how adorable they were. He eventually discovered my secret and that was the end of my mouse as pets days.
Maybe it's time for a meow-cer!
The best common Meow-cers are half Maine Coon Cat and half Abyssinian or approximations thereof, but don't tell that to any cat that is a mouser! They'll prove otherwise. But if it's a british shorthair, he'll just say, oh yea? I'll watch how ya do that. After, he'll say, I better watch that again. After that, the british shorthair will say, you do that best while i watch. Keep catching those mice. I'll keep watching you do that!
British shorthairs make better watchcats!