By far the most common mouse you will find inside buildings is the house mouse. This mouse is only about one ounce in size and cannot be confused with a rat which is 8 to 16 times bigger. Sometimes meadow mice or deer mice will also invade a building, especially if it is a rural setting.
Damage to furniture or food, a musky smell or the presence of small fecal pellets about the size of a grain of rice are all signs that mice are present.
The use of RodoFiber (fluorescent cotton balls), Detex Blox with Lumitrack ( a non-toxic monitoring bait that causes droppings to glow) , Contrac Blox with Lumitrack (rodent bait with tracking capabilities) and a UV Rodent Tracker Light is recommended in situations where there is a chronic rodent problem and you need help in finding their nest sites.
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Signs of Mouse Activity
Using a flashlight or UV Light inspect & for these rodent signs Inspect at dusk or just after dark during the peak active times.
- Fecal Pellets-Mice drop between 50-75 pellet sized droppings per day. Small, 1/4" long, and pointed ends. Use masks and gloves when dealing with rodent droppings. A fresh pellet will be soft in texture; old droppings will be hard. The darker in color; the older the dropping.
- Tracks- The mouse's hind foot track measures about 3/8" or less. May be seen in dusty or wet areas. Tip : Lightly dust with flour or baby powder in areas of suspected activity in order to view tracks.
- Gnawing Damage-Rodents gnaw on many objects. Mice will make small, clean-cut holes about 1-1/2 inch in diameter. Rats make bigger holes and have rough edges.
- Burrows-Mice will often burrow under concrete slabs inside. Look for entry points at openings in the slab, near support footings or beneath expansion joints.
- Runways-These pathways are routinely used for traveling between food and nests. The mouse runway is not as easy to detect as the rat's runway. Outside, a pathway may be smooth. Inside a runway may be lacking dust. With a UV light, you can pick up urine marks which are always present in runways.
- Grease Marks-The mixture of dirt and oil will rub off on walls next to their runways. Typical areas for grease marks are around rafters, along walls, beams, sill plates, stairways or burrow openings.
- Urine Stains-Urine stains are apparent under a UV light as it will fluorese.
- Live or Dead Rodents-Their presence is a sure confirmation
- Rodent Sounds-high pitched sounts, gnawing sounds, digging or fighting
- Rodent Odors- from the body gland and urine. The stronger the smell; the larger the infestation.
- Pets- Pets may react to a new rodent population. They may get upset or start pawing. As the population stays, the pet is not as excited.