Thursday, April 07, 2011

to build a better mouse trap

When you live in the country it is inevitable that you'll be visited by mice.  The traditional mouse trap has always worked for me.  I use peanut butter as bait.  Sometimes the mouse is caught as I walk away from just setting the trap. Other times it will take days for the critter to  come to his demise as he finally sets off the mechanism. We have a very intelligent and crafty rodent on our hands now.  He has no trouble licking all the traps in the house shiny clean without any harm to himself. I researched the web for alternate ways of catching those nasty little beasts and I think I've found a couple that might work.

This trap involves using an empty  paper towel roll set over the edge of a shelf, just barely balanced, with a spot of peanut butter inside the end of the tube. The bucket contains water. When the mouse travels the length of the tube his weight causes the tube and himself to fall into the water.  I set this up last night and this morning the tube was in the water but the mouse wasn't.  I don't know what went wrong but I suspect the tube may have been too long giving the mouse an opportunity to reverse up the inside of the tube and  to escape up the sides of the bucket. I may try this again with a shorter tube.

Here's what  I'm trying tonight. The Coke can is suspended over the bucket by a wire. The can will easily spin. I placed a smear of peanut butter in the middle of the can. The theory is that the mouse will come down the gang plank, crawl up onto the can and when the can spins he will fall into the water. I added a drop or two of liquid dish soap to the water to make it impossible to climb up the walls of the bucket.

There are some who would suggest that I catch the little varmint live and let him loose in the woods. But, this mouse is exceptionally intelligent and can't be allowed to pass his Mensa quality genes to his progeny or we'll have a tribe of rodents who will be unstoppable and eat every crumb of food in our house in a very short time. It's him or me.


Lorna said...

you got a smile out of me.

Steven said...


wally said...

The first dunk in the water must have scared the mouse. He hasn't attempted the coke can nor two other conventional traps we have set. It's a waiting game.

S. Davis said...

can't wait to hear the final outcome of this battle!

Rain said...

We have used live traps with success but the difficulty is you have to either take it miles away or be willing to drown it. The first takes a lot of time as you go after mouse after mouse. The second isn't in me to do but I can see the logic of it.