Home Improvement

How to Find a Mouse Nest and How to Eliminate It

Are you wondering how to find and eliminate a mouse nest? Today we will give you all the info you need to understand how to do it.

Mice, just like other small animals such as raccoons and squirrels, tend to create a nest to raise their young and to protect themselves from predators, thus feeling safe. A breed like the Mus Musculus, then, is particularly prolific from this point of view and has a tendency to nest right inside our homes. It does this especially in winter, to seek shelter away from the cold, to warm up, and to stay close to one or more food sources. If you have noticed any excrement, or if you have heard any suspicious noises or smells, then there is likely to be a burrow in your house.

How to recognize a rat’s hole?

First, know that these rodents build their own lair by gathering around all the useful materials they find, causing very little trouble. To give you some concrete examples, they love wood scraps such as chipboard, but also plant materials such as foliage and straw, along with sofa upholstery and garbage in general. In the list, we also insert the pieces of paper, foam rubber and any possible fabric.

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As for the shape, often a mouse nest resembles a sort of dome with an exit hole, and with a diameter of about 12 centimetres. Do not expect works of art, however, as in most cases the shape is irregular, as it always depends on the material the mouse has found lying around. The space available can also affect the shape, as the mouse is able to adapt to the area it chooses as a shelter.

How to find a mouse nest?

If you’ve read our guide on how to spot mice at home, you already know that there are certain elements that can signal the presence of a den nearby. Such as, for example, the leftovers of food and excrement, which often tend to accumulate around the burrows, in large quantities. The reason? Despite what you may believe, mice prefer to keep their “home” clean (by soiling yours), and therefore rarely defecate in nests.

There are other more or less evident signs of their presence, such as stains on the walls. In fact, these rodents tend to rub themselves against the baseboards, in such a way as to leave their own odours. During your nest hunt, you can track these greasy and dirty spots and see if they lead to a rat’s den. There are usually 2 options: either you find the nest, or you find their main food source.

If you have any doubts and if you want to find their traces better, you can sprinkle a little flour along the walls of the house or under the furniture. If you find footprints, following them you may also find a rat hole.

Also, be aware that broods of newborn mice tend to make noises especially at night, so inspecting the house at night could gain an important advantage. Finally, dogs and cats hear these sounds more easily: if you notice them barking or wandering around the house on alert, you may have found an excellent ally.

We conclude this part of our guide with other elements that you should keep an eye on, such as the presence of unpleasant odours. The smell of ammonia is a great classic, since it signals the presence of their urine, in addition to that of the feces of course. If you smell a strong ammonia smell, it means you are close, as rats use pee to mark their territory.

Where do they prefer to make a nest?

Know that they are animals that prefer dark corners and narrow places, precisely because they consider them the best solution to take cover and to protect themselves. It means that they tend to nest behind furniture, and appliances like the refrigerator, dishwasher or washing machine. If you have built-in models, then, we advise you to check carefully what is hidden behind them, because you may find an (unwelcome) surprise. Other places where mice make their nests? Speaking of appliances, we suggest that you always check the engine compartment of the fridge.

If we move outside, however, the mice nest almost everywhere, as in the case of the trunks of the woodshed. Mouse nests can be found both in trees and in the car, more precisely in the engine. Being a warm place, rodents love it.

Even sofas and armchairs for them can become a fabulous bed, to stay warm. In this case, the mouse will have to make its way by chewing the sofa cover, to sneak into the padding, so it will certainly be easier to find its lair. In fact, you just need to check for holes in the fabric and look for any traces of gnawed materials, such as the edges of the upholstery or pieces of the padding.

Unfortunately, a house can host many places and crevices that are perfect for a mouse. For example, let’s talk about the cupboards and furniture in the kitchen, an excellent base for reaching food in a short time. Dry and warm areas (for example behind stoves) are very comfortable for them, as they become ideal for developing a brood and raising offspring. However, keep in mind that mice prefer to nest close to the floor, so they hardly push themselves too high.

The situation becomes more difficult when the mice manage to infiltrate the cavities of the walls, a frequent problem even in houses with plasterboard walls. They are animals capable of gnawing on anything, so they may be able to create an entrance hole without much effort. Of course, countertops become another perfect place to host a mouse nest, and the same goes for basements and garages. Even drawers (perhaps the ones you never open) can become an ideal home for them.

How to get rid of a mouse nest?

Once you’ve found a rat’s lair, you need to pay attention to your hygiene. Before removing it, in fact, we advise you to always wear a pair of gloves and a mask to protect the respiratory tract. At that point, you can take the nest and throw it into a bucket, quickly, because inside (it is clear) there may be some mice. Finally, the den should be thrown away as hazardous waste, and the area cleaned carefully, using bleach (excellent for eliminating bacteria).

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Capturing or Killing Them: Why Do It?

Know that taking out a rat’s lair won’t stop it from making another one. It means that you should catch them, or kill them, depending on what you feel like doing. In this guide we have told you about all the types of mouse traps, so we recommend that you read it if you want to learn more: you will find both lethal and non-lethal models. Other possible solutions?

  • Poisons (lethal)
  • Adhesive substances (lethal)
  • Ultrasound (non-lethal)

As you can see, there is certainly no shortage of solutions to get rid of these annoying pests once and for all. However, we suggest that you use these tools very carefully because in some cases they can become risky. In our guides, however, you will find all the indications to follow.

At this point, we just have to wish you good hunting!

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