How To Keep Mice Out Of Your Bay Area Home

mouse on a rock

It can be very difficult to get rid of mice once they get into your home. If you're currently dealing with an infestation, it is best to contact a licensed pest management professional. But, when it comes to keeping mice out, you have a lot of tools in your tool belt. If you're willing to roll up your sleeves, you have a good chance of keeping mice from entering your Bay Area home. Here's how it works.

Step 1: Reduce Exterior Food

Mice are strongly attracted to Bay Area yards that have food options. This is because mice eat 15 to 20 times a day, and when they aren't able to find food, they don't like it at all. Food plays a big role in whether or not you'll have mice getting into your home. Here are a few sources to consider.

Birdseed. Mice probably love birdseed as much as birds do. If there is seed scattered on the ground below birdfeeders, this can lure mice to your property. We recommend moving feeders to at least 20 feet from your exterior walls.

Human food. If you leave food out after a cookout, mice may take notice.

Pet food. If you feed your pets or livestock outside, this can attract mice.

Bugs. This is another source of protein for mice. If you have lots of bugs near your home, you'll invite mouse activity.

Fruit. This is high on the list of foods a mouse desires. If you have a fruit tree near your home, it is essential that you keep on top of picking up fruit that falls to the ground.

Berries. If you have berry bushes, you're going to have mice. Protect your bushes with protective materials to keep mice out.

Garbage. Mice aren't picky. They can find many food options inside a bag of trash. Make sure you bag your trash and store it in covered containers. Why a cover? Because mice can climb and jump their way into trash receptacles. It is actually quite amazing to watch.

Step 2: Reduce Water Sources

House Mouse Eating Food In Kitchen Shelley Id

Water is essential for life. While mice can derive all the water they need from the foods they eat, they're going to be drawn to your property if you offer them a puddle to drink from, or a toy that has collected rainwater. Address all conditions that allow water to sit in your yard.

Step 3: Hiding Places

Mice are thigmotactic. They don't prefer to run across open spaces. When a mouse comes to a field in the middle of the woods, it will spend a long time skirting the edge of the field. It won't go out into the open space. How quickly it takes to enter into an open space is a reflection of its level of anxiety. While urban mice can be slightly less anxious than mice that live in the woods, they still prefer to explore locations that have lots of objects to hide under. Here are a few examples of hiding places mice prefer.

  • A stack of wood, such as camp fire wood or construction materials
  • A pile of dead branches or a leaf pile
  • A pile of stones or a stone wall
  • Dense vegetation in landscaping
  • Ornamental objects in landscaping
  • Toys both small and large

Step 4: Low Entry Points

The first place mice will enter your home is on the ground floor. When considering entry points, keep in mind that a mouse can fit through any hole that is larger than its head. That means an adult mouse can fit through a hole the size of a dime.

Step 5: Access

Mice can get into your home through entry points on the ground floor to the top of your roof. Once you've sealed entry points near the ground, don't forget to take measures to prevent mice from getting to entry points on your roof.

  • Trim branches away from your roofline.
  • Put wire mesh in your downspouts.
  • Put prickly wire on electric wires where they attach to your roofline.

Step 6: Seal Roof Penetration

It's tough work, but don't neglect getting up onto your roof and making sure you have a good seal around PVC exhaust, skylights, roof soffit intersections, and your chimney.

Step 7: Professional Control

If mouse pressures are high (that is to say that something is driving mice in your yard) it may be necessary to use trapping and other targeted control methods to reduce and monitor mouse activity. For this, we recommend hiring a professional.

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