Of Mice and Bloodlust

I went home Monday after 4 nights with my parents. It was kind of late when I got home and I was tired so I put off unloading non-perishable groceries until right before my bedtime. And then I noticed green dust coating most of the bottom of the cabinet. It was always a little dirty – some onion skins dropped in the back behind the carousel and I ignored them, figuring they were harmless. This was obviously different, being everywhere and an unsettling color. Then I noticed what looked an awful lot like a tail sticking out underneath a bag of split peas.

As you can imagine, my bedtime got pushed back. All of my bagged and boxed food wound up in the trash or in pots and pans with the lid on. I needed the roommate’s help to lift the carousel up and clean under it. Yes, somehow the chewed up split peas made it all the way underneath.

I got to bed crabby but had a wonderful dream. In it, I got all the adult mice with snap traps, but their babies were too small. But I lifted up that carousel and found them there, huddled together. The adults were chewing up the split peas and tossing them down there to them. I smashed the whole lot of them with a dictionary. I seem to also remember chasing after them with my chef knife.

Back in the real world, I’ve had superfun outings to buy food storage canisters, mousetraps, and those electric mouse repellent things. The Irishman told me that they worked brilliantly at his house, which might have something to do with why they’re at mine now. We’ve noticed much less activity lately than Monday when it seemed to have peaked. But… the peanut butter I’ve been putting on the traps is now attracting ants! Oh joy.

All this is adding up to me becoming a lot more cold blooded than I used to be. Not that I’ll actually start running around the house driving knives after them – that would be crazy and make a wreck of the house. In the beginning my stomach would drop when I found a sprung trap. Now I find them less gross than dog poop, and I pick them up the same way. If I had another one sitting still in front of me there’s a good chance I’d pin it down and smashing its skull with a can of soup. I’d bleach the can but have no problem eating it either. And when I was in bed last night and heard a snap, I just smiled. My kill count is at 5 and is slowing down.

Anyways, I have over a dozen mouse traps out. There are ant baits next to most of them. And there’s fly tape up because apparently pests come in 3’s. This was by far my most expensive week since I stopped working on the house. But now my pantry holds more than ever, and it almost even looks good! Plus, this could be an early step toward my goal of buying more bulk food and less packaging.

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For the record, I’m not actually a sadist. I’m still unwilling to use glue traps. Hopefully there will be more to say about my house soon. At this point, it’s basically unchanged since June. Except my plants are dead. Womp womp.

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11 thoughts on “Of Mice and Bloodlust

      1. coteetcampagne

        Ah, the yard sale, I read about that.
        choice is good though- we have spent ten weeks in France this year, the most ever, and it shows in our visible progress.
        It’s been the silver lining to Trev no longer being gainfully employed

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  1. E Oliver

    You need a cat! Not only do they bring you dead mice in the middle of the night, they keep clean laundry from jumping out of the basket and make sure your furniture is stylishly distressed.

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  2. francetaste

    I don’t know whether they exist in the U.S., but here we can buy little blue poison pellets that the mice eat and when they drop dead something in the pellets makes them dry out, so you don’t have stench of rotting mouse emitted from some hole in your wall.
    Hard containers are the only way to go, really. Mice will always find a way to get in, but whether they thrive depends on what food is available.
    Your story with the knife has “Three Blind Mice” going through my head now!

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  3. Christine Harris

    Hi, Chad
    I, too, am ruthless when it comes to mice invading my adorable 1930s Craftsman bungalow. I won’t use glue traps or poison pellets, but I use snap traps with nary a qualm. Thanks for sharing your mice experience.
    Chris

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  4. Mary Elizabeth

    Yes, Francetaste, I’m working in my head on a new nursery song called “Chad’s Bad Mice (See How They Run)” to the “Three Blind Mice” tune.

    Chad, this is the season when the mice will come indoors to nest, even if you don’t provide food and water for them. They will bring in acorns and black cherry pits to feed themselves. What I hate most about them is the trail of poop in my kitchen. What I hate second is the chewing they do on upholstered furniture and fabrics to get nesting material. I went through two sets of dinette cushions in my camper.

    But I must say, as a seasoned home owner and RV camper, I have had my share of run-ins with the wee critters. The best remedies are (1) a cat or (2) the electronic pest control devices. Look at reviews online to be sure you are getting the ones that vary the pitch (so the mice don’t get used to them and just ignore them) and that people say worked for them. Or just buy the brand the Irishman used. You will need one or more for each floor.

    If you do resort to glue traps, get the ones with Eugenol. I think the ones with no anesthetic are cruel, because the mice get stuck and then jump around all night trying to free themselves. I even had one chew its leg off to get away. With the Eugenol, they get anesthetized through their feet and go to sleep on the trap. My dad swore by the spring traps baited with peanut butter. Every time we would hear the trap snap shut, he would shout, “Aha! Gotcha!” I’m sure you know how he felt. The spring traps can be cruel, too, if the trap gets just one leg of the mouse.

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  5. Jo

    I’m for getting rid of mice anyway one can. We had a serious problem with them during our renovation building project. Charlie sets the traps and I just complain. Jo @ Let’s Face the Music

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  6. Nine Dark Moons

    we have mice in our basement… we trap them sometimes in humane traps and drive them 10 miles away before letting them go. but then i always worry about the babies that might potentially be left behind if momma mouse was trucked far away…

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