Winter brings bitter cold temperatures and severe weather that can change the thermal properties of your home. It can also bring pests from the outside into your home into your home to seek shelter from the elements. At first glance, a house mouse (Mus musculus) might appear cute with its light belly and light brown or gray short hair; not to mention that pesky tail. The house mouse can grow to 20 centimeters and is the most common rodent in the US. When you take a closer look, however, they are not as cute as they seem.
House mice, like termites, rats, and other rodents, can cause serious damage to your home. Chewed wires that can spark an electrical fire or holes in your drywall are two of the more common forms of damage. They are also known to carry diseases susceptible to humans such as (i.e., Lyme Disease, Salmonella, Rat-Bite Fever, and Hantavirus. In any case, they are unwelcome house guests.
Here is how you can prevent them from taking up residence in your home this winter:
- Seal any holes or cracks on the exterior of your home with silicone caulk and steel wool.
- Keep dark, less traveled areas such as your attic, basement or garage clear of clutter and store boxes off of the floor as these are some of their favorite hiding spaces.
- Inspect your attic periodically for signs of mice (i.e., droppings, gnaw marks and damaged boxes).
- Contact your pest management professional for additional tips.