Many people assume that mice hibernate over the winter. In reality, mice remain active year round. They spend the winter foraging for food, finding shelter, and avoiding predators. Fall and winter tend to be prime time for rodents in the pest control world.
How do mice survive outdoors?
In the outdoors, mice will often burrow into the ground to avoid the harsh weather. They may also create nests in places like old logs, in or under different forms of vegetation, and even in garbage and human debris. Mice will collect and store large caches of food to help them get through the colder months.
Where do mice live indoors?
When winter comes and food is limited, mice will often migrate into human habitations. Outbuildings like sheds, garages, barns, and shops are all common places that they will go, but our homes provide the ideal access to food, water, and warmth. They prefer dark, quiet areas in your home, so you might not even know that they are there for quite some time. Areas like wall voids, crawl spaces, attics, and storage rooms make great nesting spots. Since mice can breed year round, a large infestation can develop in a very short time.
Are mice dangerous in houses?
Mice can cause damage to homes and spread dangerous diseases. A rodent’s teeth never stop growing, so they must constantly chew on things to keep them a manageable length. They will chew on wood, insulation, cardboard boxes, and electrical wires. Damaged wires can be a big fire hazard, and if they chew through packaging, they can contaminate food. Mice can also spread diseases like hantavirus, leptospirosis, lymphocytic choriomeningitis, and more.
How can you prevent mice in your home?
- Seal gaps or holes on the exterior of your home with caulking or expandable spray foam, paying special attention to places where pipes and wires enter.
- Make sure windows and doors close securely
- Keep garage doors closed as much as possible
- Keep your home clean and tidy
- Keep outdoor trash cans away from the house
- Don’t leave pet food and water out overnight
- Get rid of excess moisture around your home
- Store firewood off the ground and away from the house