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Got Mice? Hold the Glue Traps

PHOTO: A dead bat stuck on a glue trap - a side effect of the least humane method of getting rid of rodents, says the Humane Society of the United States. Courtesy HSUS.
PHOTO: A dead bat stuck on a glue trap - a side effect of the least humane method of getting rid of rodents, says the Humane Society of the United States. Courtesy HSUS.
May 15, 2013

LANSING, Mich. - A mouse sighting in your home can turn even the bravest person into a quivering mass. Whether it's a few mice or a few hundred, there are effective and humane ways to deal with furry unwanted guests that don't involve poison or glue traps.

John Griffin, director of humane wildlife services for the Humane Society of the United States, said a first step should be sealing up holes and crevices in your home or structure - and, in short, to "think like a mouse."

"These guys can access entry points that are very small, looking for dime-sized holes and starting to close that up with material that's going to stand the test of time and also repel them," he said. "Steel wool is a good example - something that, if they try to chew through it, they couldn't get in it."

Once you have sealed up any cracks and holes in a living space, Griffin said, the next step is removal. If you absolutely must kill a mouse, he said, one of the least humane ways to do this is with glue traps. Mice get stuck and either suffocate in the glue or die a slow and agonizing death.

"Choose the least inhumane methods," he said, "whether it's a quick-kill trap like a 'snap trap' or a catch-and-removal - catching with live traps and releasing outside after you've closed up the access to your home."

An advantage of catch-and-release traps, he said, is that they're reusable and should be checked often to be sure a mouse doesn't die inside the trap. Glue traps often lead to collateral damage, he said, because other animals such as birds and bats get stuck on them, too.

It's also important to place food in containers that you store in cabinets, Griffin said, and to be sure to clean up any crumbs or stored food that could be attracting rodents.

Rob South, Public News Service - MI