Category: Mice

Common Spring Pest Problems in Virginia

What are some of the common spring pest problems in Northern Virginia and Maryland that homeowners can expect this spring? What can you do to keep pests out of your home? And, how can you protect your family and home from pests this spring and summer?

Protect your family against common spring pest problems in Virginia
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The weather affects pest pressure levels. The faster it warms up, the more pest pressure will emerge sooner and more intensely. Insects will never entirely die in the Washington, D.C. area over the winter, so they are overwintering and biding their time. Ants, spiders, and stinging insects are more resistant to the cold than other pests, and they will emerge as the weather warms up.

Termites are another spring pest that is more than just an irritation to homeowners. These destructive, yet often undetectable bugs may jeopardize your home’s structural integrity and cost you a lot of money in treatment and repair payments.

My Pest Pros’ 2022 Spring Pest Watch List

What pests are likely to be found in and near homes this spring? Here’s a rundown of early-season standouts:

  • Ants — Pavement ants, odorous house ants, and carpenter ants will be drawn to buildings in quest of food and a new home.
  • Termites – On warm days following a spring shower, keep an eye out for termite swarmers buzzing near windows and doors.
  • Wasps can nest within camping equipment, storage boxes, and near light fixtures, as well as in the rafters of sheds, barns, and garages.
  • Mice – It’s mouse mating season, so you could notice an increase in the number of these furry pests in your shed, garage, or basement.

If you notice any of these pests, it’s time to call a pest control company like My Pest Pros. Our early-season pest-prevention solutions will eliminate pests before they become an issue.

Spring Pest Prevention Tips

This spring and summer, you don’t have to wait until Memorial Day to have a pest-free home and yard. Taking a proactive approach to pest management can save time and money as compared to trying to repair a pest problem after it has occurred.

These basic methods can help homeowners protect their houses from pests.

Reduce What Attractants Pests

Follow these simple steps to reduce the circumstances that attract pests to your yard or house:

  • Clear the yard of twigs and rubbish left behind during the winter. These things provide hiding places for pests such as ants and rats.
  • Clean the gutters of leaves and trash. Pests such as ants and termites can get moisture from them.
  • Keep garbage and recycling can lids tight to avoid pests such as rats, insects, and animals from getting into them.
  • Clean up food spills and crumbs on the inside, keep food, especially pet food, in sealed containers, and dispose of garbage on a regular basis.

Block Pest Access Points

Examine the foundation, behind window and door frames, beneath eaves, along with utility access points, around chimneys, and along the roofline to check whether winter weather has created any gaps. 

With excellent quality materials, fill holes and fix screens and vent covers.

Watch for the Signs of Pest Activity

Keep an eye out for flying or crawling pests, abandoned insect wings (from termite swarmers), pest droppings, mud tubes on cinder block exterior walls in basements and crawlspaces, and bite marks or holes in food packages. All of these signs point to the presence of pests.

Call the Pest Control Experts to Protect Your Home

If your home is being invaded by pests this spring, it may be time to call in a professional pest control expert. The pest experts at My Pest Pros are here to help protect your family and home. Call us at 703-665-4455.

Are Alternative Mouse Control Techniques Effective?

Getting rid of mice is a top priority for most homeowners. We are often asked by potential clients about alternative mouse control techniques, strategies, and products. Alternative mouse products can include sprays, oils, and electronic products. In this article, we will discuss some of these alternative mouse control strategies, and how effective they are for preventing or eliminating mouse problems.

 Ultrasonic Rodent Repellents

Ultrasonic rodent repellents are one of the most common products we are asked about and see in homes or businesses struggling with mice problems. Ultrasonic devices are often sold in hardware stores, big box retailers, online retailers, and many other stores. The concept is that they emit an ultrasonic sound that humans cannot hear, but is annoying and distressing to mice. They are supposedly safe for humans and pets. The reality is that these devices are not effective. We see them in many homes with major rodent issues. They are even sold in major home improvement chains where we have been brought in to solve their mouse infestations. Our recommendation is to save your money and not purchase ultrasonic rodent repellants.

We grade these products: F

Peppermint Oil

Peppermint and other essential oils are thought to be helpful in repelling pests including mice and rats. These oils are inexpensive, non-toxic, and easily purchased at many local stores. You can even grow your own peppermint. Mice have poor eyesight and very sensitive noses, so the theory is that these products will help deter mice since they hate the smell.

The reality is a lot more complicated. A LOT of these oils is needed to make a difference. The smell may irritate you as much as the mice if you use enough. The smell of these products may also be very irritating to people with sensory issues. And, because mice will do whatever they need to reach a food or shelter source, they will ignore or overcome their discomfort.  These products also break down and will need to be reapplied often.

Growing peppermint in a garden can be helpful to deter rodents from eating your vegetables or flowers. Peppermint oil can help – not likely solve – minor rodent issues. But it won’t do much for major infestations.

Our grade: B

Animal Feces and Oils

Let’s just start with the obvious. Keeping animal feces around your home is unsanitary!

Just as mice will avoid areas with some oils, they will avoid areas with certain dried animal feces and oils. Here we are talking about the droppings of predators, primarily cats and snakes. Mice will often avoid areas with cat poop, snake feces and snake skins. A major downside of this approach to preventing mouse problems is that you have to handle feces, and as previously mentioned keeping cat or snake feces around is unsanitary. It’s also not a very practical solution. Having feces around also will not stop a rodent infestation that has already begun.

Our grade: F

Get A Cat

This is the most common refrain we hear in the field. While some cats are great hunters, many cats are, well, useless beyond their companionship. Get a cat because you want one and not solely for mice. Cats can sometimes alert you to a mouse issue and may catch some, but they may not be enough for a major infestation.

Our grade: C (for Cat)

The most effective strategy and method for eliminating mice issues is hiring a professional pest control company such as My Pest Pros. Our technicians have years of training and science behind their approaches to rodent control.

Call My Pest Pros today at 703-665-4455 if you have a rodent infestation.

Be on the lookout for signs of rodents

When the weather gets cooler, rodents like mice and rats seek warmth indoors. According to the National Pest Management Association, 45% of rodent problems occur in the fall and winter. It’s important to pay attention to signs of rodents in your home or business.

Signs of rodents
Mice can chew threw wiring and cause fires

A rodent infestation can be a nuisance, but these pests are capable of spreading a variety of dangerous diseases, including Salmonella, murine typhus, infectious jaundice, rat-bite fever, and the potentially lethal Hantavirus. You should know how to spot a rodent infestation and take the necessary steps to keep them out.

Signs of a rodent infestation:

  • Rodent Droppings: Pellets can often be found under sinks, inside chewed cardboard boxes, along baseboards, and on top of wall beams in areas where food is stored.
  • Gnaw marks: Mice can bite through walls, wood, and wires. Mice are notorious for chewing on electrical wiring, which can increase the risk of a fire. Chewing on the wires helps keep their teeth sharp. Because rodents prefer tight and small spaces, they will even sometimes build a nest in an electrical box, where they can chew on the wires and cause a short circuit or fire. One 2012 report attributed 25 percent of fires to rodent damage.
  • Nests: Rodents prefer to nest in dark, secluded places where they are unlikely to be disturbed. Mice like to build nests out of shredded paper products, cotton, packing materials, and other fabrics.
  • Rub marks: Rats can leave dark markings or grease marks along walls and floors. This is caused by the rubbing of their oily fur as they follow trails from their nests to food sources.
  • Strange noises: Scurrying in the walls or in the attic could indicate a rodent problem. Mice and rats are more active at night. Rodents like these areas because they are quiet and likely to be undisturbed. Attic insulation is also used for nest building.

Protecting Your Home from Rodents

Even if your home has not experienced rodent problems in the past, the cold winter months can send mice and rats looking for new nesting locations. A mice problem or rat issue can spring up quickly with no warning. The best plan of action is to have a pest protection plan in place before you have a problem. A pest professional will inspect your home for possible gaps and entryways, prevent them from gaining access, identify conditions around the home that can attract pest issues, and help manage nearby rodent and pest populations.

My Pest Pros can help protect your home to prevent rodents and other pests. If you are seeing or hearing the signs of rodents in your home or business, give us a call and we can help eliminate those pest problems.

Call My Pest Pros today at 703-665-4455 or contact us online.

We’ll Get Rid of What’s Bugging You!

Do You Need Pest Control in the Winter?

You’re walking around your house during a cold night, and you hear a strange noise coming from your basement. You run down to check on it and see a mouse. You walk into the kitchen on an unseasonably warm winter day and find that there are ants crawling all over your walls. Or maybe you turn the lights on at night and find roaches on your kitchen counter. What do you do? Well, for many homeowners, pest control isn’t something they think about until spring or summer rolls around. But pests aren’t restricted by seasonal changes—and neither should you be. Pest control in the winter is definitely a smart approach to protecting your family.

One of the biggest reasons that some homeowners avoid calling in pest control in the winter months is because they assume the pests are hibernating and there’s no need to worry about them. However, this isn’t always the case—many pests stay active in the winter and can still be an issue that needs to be dealt with immediately. If you’re concerned about whether you need pest control in Maryland in the winter or not, these tips can help you make an informed decision about whether it’s necessary or not.

What Pests Are Active During The Winter

As winter approaches, it is easy to assume that bugs and other pests will also be hibernating for a few months. But some pests like cockroaches and rodents actually thrive in colder temperatures, making your home an all-you-can-eat buffet! Some bugs are more active when it’s cold outside, so it’s important to know how to recognize them and keep them out of your home.

Here are 4 common pests you should look out for during these cooler months:

  • Cockroaches. They may be one of America’s favorite foods (although, who would want to eat something with such a filthy reputation?), but roaches don’t just like pizza and beer – they love being warm too! When you see ants crawling through your kitchen or bathroom in the middle of winter, you can guarantee they brought some friends along with them. Roaches need warmth to survive, which means if it gets cold enough where you live, then you might have a bug problem on your hands.
  • Rats and mice. Just like roaches, rats and mice need heat to survive as well as food (yum). Most pests take advantage of uninsulated homes where insulation has worn thin over time or tiny cracks in walls provide access into living areas.
  • Silverfish. Silverfish, a type of insect similar to roaches, feel most comfortable at room temperature. Don’t let their name fool you though; silverfish get their name from their appearance rather than actual color. Silverfish are often mistaken for spiders due to their size and body shape, which tends to creep people out even more! What exactly does silverfish look like? Well, I wouldn’t recommend searching for one to find out, but if you did…silverfish are about half an inch long with two long antennae on top of their heads. Their bodies are covered by what looks like metallic scales, hence their name silverfish. Like roaches and other pests that prefer warmer environments in colder weather, silverfish tend to stay inside during freezing temperatures because they become sluggish once it starts getting really cold. However, since silverfish typically don’t venture far from hiding places indoors anyway, it doesn’t hurt to check around outlets and appliances before bedtime to make sure there aren’t any insects in your home looking for a cozy place to spend some quality time. If any pests do show up unexpectedly during the winter season, check below for tips on how you can address them effectively without calling professionals.
  • Termites. There’s nothing cute and cuddly about termites, but they definitely deserve to make it onto our list. These pests target softwood, hardwood, and lumber found in homes and infestations usually go unnoticed until it’s too late. And while many people think termites are only active in warmer months, termites are active year-round, but often go undetected until they swarm during the warmer months.

Why Pests Are More Active During The Winter

It’s easy to understand why cold-blooded pests are more active when it’s colder outside. When it’s freezing, heat loss is a real problem for animals that are used to cozy, tropical temperatures. Maintaining body temperature takes a lot of effort, and many animals will go to great lengths to find warm spots during cold weather. That includes making their way inside human homes and business establishments through cracks and crevices. Pests are common during the winter months as well because as we spend more time inside there is more food available. In other words, even if your home seems like an impenetrable fortress from a pest control perspective, there’s still plenty of opportunity for unwanted guests.

What To Do If You Find An Infestation Right Now

The first step is to identify what kind of pest you’re dealing with. Next, we want to know why pests are getting into your home, what is attracting pests to your home as well as how are pests getting into your home. Identifying the pest, pest entry points, and what is attracting them are critical to solving the problem.

So, How Can You Keep Pests Out of Your Home? The best way to prevent pests in your home during the winter months is to practice good preventative measures throughout all seasons.

If you see signs of pests in your Maryland, Virginia, or Washington D.C.-area property (roaches especially), you might want to consider contacting the professionals from our team at My Pest Pros today at 703-665-4455!

Is There a Mice Problem in Your Springfield Home?

mice problem in springfield
If you have one mouse, you likely have a mouse problem!

Do you keep finding little mouse droppings around your Springfield home? Are there holes in the walls and floorboards? If so, you’re not alone. Mice are one of the most common household pests, and they can be surprisingly hard to get rid of, especially if they’ve made themselves comfortable somewhere inside your home that you don’t have access to on a regular basis—like under the floorboards or behind the walls.

Tips To Prevent a Mice Problem in Springfield

If you have a mice problem inside your home, chances are there are one (or more) places where they are getting in. In order to effectively address a mice issue, it’s important to figure out how these tiny creatures are entering your home. Then, you can seal off those entry points and repel them before they make themselves comfortable in your home.

Here are some tips to keep mice out:

Identify how mice are getting in. Before starting any type of pest control treatment program, it is essential that we find out how pests are entering your home. Once entry points are identified, try to seal them off with steel wool, caulk or other materials to keep mice and other rodents from getting back inside. Also, make sure that they haven’t been using your garage door as an entrance point.

Get rid of clutter. Cleaning up clutter is one of the easiest ways to prevent mice and rats from gaining access into your house. After all, if there isn’t anything for rodents to climb on, crawl through or chew on then why would they stick around? So be sure to toss out old newspapers, empty containers, and unused furniture.

Eliminate ‘rodent ladders.’ Trim back bushes, trees, vines, and anything else that mice can use to climb. If mice have easy access to your roof or gutters, they can likely find a way into your attic. You may even want to consider sealing off entrances to attics and basements to ensure that pests can’t find another way inside.

Signs Of A Mouse Infestation

Do you see small brown or white dots moving around your home or near food? These might be droppings from mice. Do you smell something unusual, like a musky odor, but can’t find where it’s coming from? This could be a sign of an infestation. Are there more than usual bugs like flies or ants nearby your home? A high level of flies and other insects may mean mice are present and can cause health problems for humans. Can you hear scratching sounds or scratching noises at night? If you have any of these signs in your home or business, then it is possible that you have a mice problem that should be addressed immediately by our team.

Where Do Mice Live?

Mice typically live outdoors, but they can also find their way into our homes. These rodents can squeeze through openings smaller than an inch and often choose to live under or around human dwellings. Their nests are typically located near sources of water and food, so be on alert if you notice droppings or urine stains near your water heater, plumbing system, kitchen area, or pantry.

Mice Prevention Techniques

While there are some basic preventative measures you can take to keep mice out of your home, if they’ve already made their way inside, you need an expert exterminator. Our technicians can help. We offer same-day service and extermination methods that are safe for children and pets. If you think mice might be getting into your home, contact us right away—you may just save yourself from having to deal with any mouse infestations at all!

My Pest Pros’ rodent experts can help eliminate mice problems in Springfield as well as across Northern Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Maryland. Call us today at 703-665-4455to schedule an inspection or begin protecting your home.

Healthy Winter Pest Control Tips for Your Oakton Home

Summer is a time filled with sun, fun, and pests. Insects and spiders are out in full force when the weather’s warm. But did you know that some pests can be an issue for your home in the winter, too? We’re here to help with healthy winter pest control tips for your Oakton home.  

Winter pests can make your home in Oakton uncomfortable and unhealthy. When the weather changes and pests are looking for places to hide out for the winter, your home is an appealing warm sanctuary. Bugs, spiders, and rodents find their way inside your home through cracks, gaps, and holes. Year-round Oakton, VA pest control is the solution.

In this post, we’re looking at winter pest control tips that will keep your family safe and your home comfortable through the season. Read on to find out how to protect your home.

Winter Pests in Oakton, VA

As the summer fades away to fall, so too do the bees, mosquitos, and ants of the warm season. But Virginia is home to other kinds of pests in the winter. 

Mice, Rats, and Squirrels

Rodents can wreak havoc on your home, causing all sorts of destruction and messes. They are nuisance animals, but the worst part is they’re dangerous to have around.

Rodents sometimes chew through wires. You may lose electricity or services, but your home could go up in flames, too. 

They’re also harmful because of the diseases they carry. They may bite members of the household leading to illness.

Stinkbugs and Cockroaches

These bugs tend to stay outside when it’s warm. Once the temperatures drop, they look for somewhere warm to hide. That’s when they infiltrate your home. 

Stinkbugs are generally harmless. Cockroaches are not. They also carry diseases, and some people are allergic to them.

Spiders

You could have more spiders inside during the winter because the other bugs come in. Spiders follow the food. Not all spiders are dangerous. But some are. The best way to keep harmful spiders out of your home is to keep all spiders out. 

Prevention is Key

When it comes to Oakton, VA pest control, prevention is the best option. It’s better to be proactive than reactive. A good proactive solution to pest problems is Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

IPM is an approach to pest control that incorporates proactive measures to optimize the conditions in your home for keeping pests out. Then, approved pesticides are integrated when needed to mitigate any issues that come along after. Your home is protected using preventative measures combined with less pesticide.

Healthy Winter Pest Control Tips

There are some tips that will help keep unhealthy pests away during the winter. Here’s what we recommend.

  • Keep your home clean.
  • Keep food stored away properly with lids and seals.
  • Don’t open doors when nearby lights are on.
  • Seal cracks around windows and doors before it gets cold.
  • Re-caulk where the seals are deteriorating.
  • Cover openings with mesh screens.
  • Keep houseplants trimmed.
  • Include winter in your Pest Control plan.

Health Risks Winter Pests Pose

Winter pests sometimes carry diseases. Both cockroaches and mice may transmit salmonella or hantavirus to the members of the household. 

Salmonella often causes fever along with stomach issues. You may experience severe stomach cramping and diarrhea.

Hantaviruses cause various symptoms. The most common hantavirus in the U.S. causes lung and respiratory issues.

Final Thoughts

We tend to spend more time in our homes during the winter. That means it’s more important to keep our homes healthy. You can keep your Oakton home protected from pests that carry disease and cause damage when they come inside. A service like IPM by My Pest Pros is the perfect solution to your unhealthy pest problems all throughout the year. Call My Pest Pros today at 703-665-4455 and you can relax because We’ll Get Rid of What’s Bugging You!

Effective Mice Control in Rockville

One of the most common and intrusive pests is mice. Since they can tear up your furniture and leave droppings, you no doubt want to prevent and kick out these critters. Let’s cover how you can tell if you have a mouse problem and what you can do for the best mice control in Rockville.

Effective mice control in Rockville is important for health and safety.
Mouse in the kitchen eating bread

What Are the Signs of a Mouse Problem?

There are a couple of ways that you can tell you have a mouse infestation. The most common sign is mouse droppings. These usually look like tiny, dark-brown pellets smaller than a grain of rice. If you have a mouse problem, you’ll often see these droppings anywhere you store food. And that doesn’t just mean on the floor of your pantry or storeroom. Mice can climb: so you may find droppings even in your cabinet.

Another indication of a mouse problem is evidence of gnawing and chewing on your furniture. Typically, you’ll see these tiny marks on the bottom corners of your couches and chairs. 

You might also see holes at the bottom of your walls, usually around the size of a dime. Tiny as they look, mice can squeeze through them.

Why Do Mice Want to Be in Your Home?

If you live in the Rockville or DC area, you’ll most likely experience mouse issues in the fall or winter. 

This seasonal uptick in infestations is because rodents will retreat into homes to escape the cold. The deer mice commonly found in Maryland and Virginia don’t hibernate. So, your cozy and warm home is especially appealing to them when things start frosting over.

Since they don’t hibernate, mice also need to keep foraging and eating year-round.

There is often a scarcity of resources for mice outside, especially in the winter when plants and bugs die off. So finding a human’s fully-stocked food pantry is like hitting the mother lode to them.

Thankfully, there are ways you can get rid of mice before they spoil all your food. 

Why is Effective Mice Control Important?

Getting rid of your mouse problem isn’t just about keeping your home clean: it’s crucial for your safety.

Rodents can spread all sorts of dangerous diseases by leaving droppings, urine, and saliva on your food. Some of those diseases, such as salmonella and hantavirus, are potentially life-threatening to you.

Effective mice control will also save you money in the long run. Mice can chew not just through your furniture and walls, but also your home’s pipes and wiring. If the infestation gets severe enough, it might result in damages costing you thousands of dollars.

So if you think you have a mouse problem, your health and your wallet might depend on it.

How to Prevent and Eliminate Mice and Achieve the Best Mice Control in Rockville

For effective mice control in Rockville and the rest of Montgomery County, call My Pest Pros. While some homeowners may choose to tackle this issue themselves, many people without the proper training and experience miss the signs of where activity is coming from and the entry points.

My Pest Pros is a Quality Pro-certified company that helps diagnose your mouse problems and solves them for you. Their highly-trained technicians can even provide same-day and emergency services so you can relax, and We’ll Get Rid of What’s Bugging You! If you live in Rockville, call us today you at 301-447-0643.

My Pest Pros offers the best and most effective mice control in Rockville, MD. You can reach them by phone 24/7 to talk to a live expert and schedule an inspection. The company is renowned in Maryland and Northern Virginia for its professionalism, affordability, and results for you.

How to Keep Pests Away from Your Arlington Holiday Dinner

Below are three easy steps to prevent and eliminate pests that could spoil your holiday dinner plans:

1. Know how to identify household pests when you see them.

2. Look for signs of household pests even if you do not see the actual critter.

3. Call My Pest Pros for all your pest prevention and elimination needs.

In this article, we’ll give you a list of some of the most common household pests known to crash Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners including ants, mice, and other pantry pests. In addition, we’ll provide you with ways to identify the signs of their presence and how to keep pests away that can ruin your holidays.

Pests can run your holidays

What Are Some Common Household Pests Around the Holidays?

Odorous ants, flour beetles, cockroaches, and mice are a handful of the most common pantry pests known to invade households and ruin food. Carpenter ants are also a nuisance that can be quite dangerous as they can compromise the structural integrity of your home by eating away at wooden supports.

While not known for spreading diseases, nobody wants to open up a bag of flour and find odorous ants or flour beetles inside. Both of these pests are notorious for invading pantries, enticed inside by poorly sealed open containers or crumbs of spilled food.

On the other hand, cockroaches and mice, which will also not pass up the opportunity to scrounge for food in your kitchen closet, can carry diseases that infect humans. These pests are also very good at nesting in hard-to-reach places like behind counters and within the insulated walls of your home.

What Are Some Signs Indicating the Presence of Pests?

There are numerous signs indicating the presence of pests, not the least of which is witnessing the creatures themselves. Odorous ants and flour beetles can be detected by the obnoxious odors they put off. Carpenter ants will leave small piles of wood shavings. Cockroaches and mice are most commonly indicated by the presence of droppings and rustling noises in the walls.

Signs that your pantry has been raided by pests can include actually seeing critters in your food – usually odorous ants and flour beetles. Mice and cockroaches tend to scurry away when you approach but nibbled through and torn apart packaging and fecal droppings or even the presence of cockroach eggs can indicate their invasion.

How Do You Prevent Household Pests from Ruining Holiday Dinners?

A few simple ways to prevent these household pests from ruining your Thanksgiving and Christmas meals include:

1. Ensuring a clean kitchen with no lingering spills or crumbs.

2. Properly sealing and storing open containers and bags of food.

3. Setting up pest traps especially in vulnerable areas such as the kitchen.

4. Calling My Pest Pros at the first sign of any pest invasion.

The number one attraction that draws pantry pests into your home are crumbs and spills that are left untended. Make sure you sweep up all food that drops on the floor and mop up any spills. Pantry pests will make short work of your food if you don’t properly store open food in airtight containers.

Setting up traps to lure ants, roaches, and mice away from your food will help keep your pantry safe and allow you to get rid of unwanted household pests.

My Pest Pros can help supply you with all your pest prevention and elimination needs to make sure your holiday dinner isn’t ruined by pests. Give us a call today at 703-665-4455 so that you can enjoy the holidays without the unwanted guests in your pantry. And Relax, We’ll Get Rid of What’s Bugging You!

8 Ways to Protect Your Alexandria Home From Mice

Mouse in Alexandria
Mice are a common problem in Alexandria

Cooler fall and winter temperatures are prime time for mice to get into homes. Left unchecked, a rodent problem can quickly grow out of control. A single mouse can begin having babies at three weeks of age and can then produce up to 10 liters of 12 mice per year. With math like that, it’s easy to see how a couple mice can quickly become an infestation. The best way to protect your Alexandria home from mice problems is through deterrence. 

1. Seal Gaps and Cracks

The best way to keep mice out of your home is by making sure they do not have access. You won’t have mice inside your home if they can’t get in. While that may sound obvious, many homeowners are shocked to learn how easy it is for mice to get inside. Mice can squeeze through gaps as small as a dime and rats can get through quarter-sized holes. Openings around utility lines, garage doors, and under the siding. Mice and rats are excellent climbers, so don’t forget to look up to find possible gaps. 

Gaps and cracks in a foundation or other parts of a home can allow mice and rats access points.

2. Eliminate food sources

bird feedders can attract mice

Another obvious-sounding tip is to stop feeding them. You would not believe the number of homes we see with bird feeders too close to homes. Many homeowners also leave food dishes outside for cats, dogs, and even raccoons and squirrels. Mice will love these all-you-can-eat buffets! The seeds and nuts that will attract birds will also attract mice. If you must have a bird feeder, place it at least 20 feet away from the home. Don’t leave pet food outside. And don’t forget about that grass seed in the shed or garage. Mice will love seed and pet food and can chew through the beads. Store seed and pet food in sealed containers. 

3. Clean up your yard

Mice generally do not like to be seen. They look for tall grasses and weeds to shelter them from predators. Piles of grass, wood piles, and leaves are great for protection. Clean these up, store firewood away from the home and off the ground (this is also a great way to protect against termites), and remove items and other containers that are lying around the yard. Your messy yard is the perfect place for mice to hide!

4. Seal trash containers

Along with cleaning up your yard, don’t leave out open trash cans or recycling bins. Your trash is a great food source for mice. Spilled food or drinks will also be tempting to them and other animals.

5. Seal your composter

Composting has taken off in popularity in recent years. Many homeowners want to reduce their carbon footprint and trash going to landfills. Composting and gardening also increased as people were around home more during the COVID-19 pandemic. But there is also much for mice to like – and eat – from nuts to seeds and food scraps in your compost. Make sure it is well sealed like your trash containers.

6. Trim trees and bushes

Mice and rats are excellent climbers. They can even climb up brick walls and wiring. But don’t make it easy for them. Trees and bushes touching the home or hanging over your roof are like a ladder. Once on the roof or gutters, mice can get through difficult to find small gaps to get inside your attic. 

7. Paint, seal, caulk

Sealing and exclusion help prevent mice and other pest issues
Sealing and exclusion can help keep mice out of your home.

Good home maintenance is great for pest-proofing. Not only will it help to keep mice out, but it can help deter insects and other pests by sealing up entryways. Homes are in constant need of maintenance. Inspect and repair dried or peeling caulk especially around doors and windows.

8. Hire a pest control professional

No matter how hard you work, no home is perfectly sealed. Mice are small, smart, and have a great sense of smell. They will find the smallest of imperfections and take advantage of them. A professional pest control program from companies such as My Pest Pros can help identify and protect against pests including mice. Our technicians are trained to see the small details homeowners often overlook to protect your Alexandria home from mice problems. We use pet-friendly products to protect and eliminate mice and other pests.

For further help, learn more about how My Pest Pros can protect your home from mice and call us at 703-665-4455 and We’ll Get Rid of What’s Bugging You!®

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