Pest control companies receive a rush of calls for help with mouse problems at Christmas – because the mother-in-law is coming to stay.
Mouse control experts at SUPERPROOF say householders want to make sure that close relatives who come to stay for the festive season are not offended or worried.
He also warned that householders risked causing a mouse population explosion by leaving out more food than usual over Christmas.
SUPERPROOF experts explained: “If people know they have a problem with mice, matters often come to a head just before Christmas because getting rid of them is often on the checklist for getting ready for the relatives.
“They don’t want a situation on Christmas Day where the mother-in-law is saying, ‘you either get rid of the mice, or I’m going instead. Sadly, by that time, that is a choice they no longer have to make.”
Emergency pest control
Householders often report seeing more mice over the Christmas period, and make emergency calls to pest control companies, or call them as soon as it is time to take down the tree.
SUPERPROOF experts continued to say: “There is a misconception that mice come into buildings during winter months, which accounts for the extra sightings. In fact, mice are already in the house, because they live in walls, floors and ceilings.
“What is more likely, is that people spend longer at home, and stay up later, so they start to notice the signs of mice, especially in the evening, when mice start to become more active.
“Also, with more food left lying around at Christmas, and crumbs from all those mice pies and pork lattice bakes on the dining room floor, mice are tempted out to get their Christmas dinner as well.
“The lesson must be, though, that there are no quick fixes. Householders should be careful not to waste money or put people at risk by putting down rodent bait, which very rarely solves a mouse infestation problem.
“Bringing rodent bait into the home could put pets and small children at risk. They could eat it accidently, mistaking it for a Christmas treat. Even rodent poison bought in shops is potentially very harmful to humans.”
Mice population explosion
The extra food supply, combined with the short breeding cycle for mice, can also lead to a rodent population explosion. House mice have evolved to eat what humans eat, including meat, chocolate and, yes, mince pies.
Householders who discover they have a mouse problem are advised to make sure all food is kept in sealed containers. Floors and surfaces should be kept clear of food and food waste. Kitchen tops should be cleaned thoroughly before used for food preparation.
Then, to get rid of mice permanently, call SUPERPROOF and arrange for the property to be professionally mouse proofed, from the inside out. That way mice cannot get into the living space to forage for the food they need.
That way, they must leave the property to find one where they do have access to a food supply – whether that is mince pies or something less festive.