Friday, November 20, 2009

Daily Rodent Infestation Update

Since I've received no less than 16 emails, calls, and texts dripping with curiosity today...

First, see yesterday's - Infestation Update.

Recall, the pest guy cut some holes in my ceiling:





And placed two small metal traps up there, along with two glue traps.

There was plenty of squeaky chirping activity above me only two hours after setting them. And it carried on through last night. I heard both cages set and a whole lot more *activity* up there. So much for my original hunch that it was just *one squirrel*!

So this morning I called the pest guy who said he'd come over. Now, he was a nice guy (homeschooled his kids!) and he's based 35 minutes away. Even though I paid him $375 for very little work, I figured I could do him a favor and empty the traps this morning myself. Even though I was scared poopless to stick my hands up in those crevices!

On the phone he assured me that the glued mice would be dead from exhaustion; and that the caged mice wouldn't be able to bite me through the small holes. So I grabbed my kitchen ladder, a pair of leather gloves...and opened the first hole.

I pulled down the little cage and sure enough, there was a ratty looking mouse in there. Immediately I took him outside and emptied it into my trash can. I will say this - it really stunk.

Then I went back up, with considerable trepidation slid down the glue trap, and found nothing on it.

Then I set about opening the second sheetrock panel.

Again, I started with the cage, pulled the smelly thing down, found another mouse inside and emptied it into my *death row*, banned-from-YouTube trash barrel outside.

Then I came back for the second glue trap in this opening. I couldn't see it and was unenthused about exploring with my hand up there.

So I went and got a *poker* - some disposable chopstick. I slid it up into the rafter and definitely hit something mousy. Heck, it felt like it was moving and I almost fell off my ladder!

Later on this morning, in between dropping kids off, my calisthetics, laundry, etc. I made it back into my bedroom with the camera. I held it up in the ceiling and snapped this:



So my sensation was correct - except for the *live* part. Two more dead rodents. I have left them there because the pest guy told me those traps can take out 6 or 7 before they are full - though they will stink.

I also took another look in the first hole and thought I espied a tail.

In fact there was another dead one up there - though right next to the glue trap which surprised me. What, did it escape and THEN die? I grabbed the MOST APPROPRIATE tools I could think of and pulled the corpse out:



So five casualties on the first night of hunting!

Sounds good, right?

Guess again. It's a terrible finding.

Pest guy told me that with mice, pretty much nothing can be done. He said their litters average 8-10 babies so in all likelihood we'll be killing them at about their birth rate.

The basement here is what's called a slab - it's not a poured foundation. So there are plenty of holes and ways these mice could be, and will be, entering the walls. I do have one particularly big hole next to my bedroom which he said I could have someone just pour a bunch of concrete in to perhaps seal it off. But there exists another problem. The entire back of the house is spanned by my deck, which is atop the slab. To close off all of the holes on this one side, they'd have to tear up my ginormous deck, do a bunch of sealing, and then that might not even do the trick.

Pretty much this house is screwed. It was just too thoughtlessly built renovated. But that's what happens when everything is done by different, self-centered, contractors.

I pressed the pest guy as to what would he do if it were his house.

He told me to go buy 4 crate loads of *green poison* and place them all around....I guess the foundation. He said the mice would eat it and become dehydrated or something. This I'm going to do, and deduct as well from my December rent.

At the moment I do have one complication. The sheetrock panels which were cut out aren't being cooperative. The pest guy had them duct-taped but they won't stick anymore. So as bedtime approaches we are looking at two wide-openings on MOUSE HIGHWAY. I just know one, or more mice, will fall down to the floor of my bedroom tonight and terrorize our family. Maybe even a bigger one - a RAT perhaps?

I may run to Lowes tonight if I can't think of another way to jerry-rig them up there.

Lastly, I asked the pest guy if that nasty smell was the mice's natural aroma or not.

He said it wasn't - that when they are trapped and facing death it's a natural animal reaction to release *all of their waste product*.

I'm not kidding, these traps stunk to high heaven. And I've been smelling this horrible odor all day long. I've washed everything, multiple times - including the INSIDES OF MY NOSTRILS yet I can't get rid of this putrid stench.

Oh yeah,....death row.

One of my captives drowned in the little bit of water that was in the barrel. It couldn't swim a lick therefore it was obviously an *urban mouse*.

The other is quietly awaiting his fate. Though it almost made a miraculous escape.

Incredibly, a rather large tree branch blew down and fell RIGHT INTO THE BARREL.

On my way to the playground I ran back to tease the illegal alien and saw him clingling atop said branch, only inches from freedom.

Meanwhile, in the open hole RIGHT ABOVE MY HEAD....I can hear yet another mouse squealing in the glue trap!

I wonder if I can stop paying rent over this?

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

so..... i'm sure you'll say this issue has NOTHING to do with owning vs. renting right?

Didn't someone here mention that you live in squalor while raising your kids in the name of saving $200 per month?

How's that working out for ya?!?!?!?

CaptiousNut said...

Working out great, thanks.

I could have bought this house for near 700k 2.5 years ago and been stuck with $4,000+ in monthly bills - for 30 years.

Instead I rented it for $2,500 each month.

It's pretty rare these days, in this housing crash, for anyone to try to mock me for *renting*. The majority of folk are downright envious.

So I give you points at least for *originality*!

Anonymous said...

Do you have the Rats of Nimh living in your attic or what?

panner said...

dude, just spread the dcon around. most likely they'll go to the water and die there. if they die in your walls, it'll stink for a day or two. we had mice in our city apartment and the dcon is all that worked. my sister in plymouth says her two cats take care of biz...

Gavinmangus said...

The pest guy is an idiot.

You're not supposed to just "leave them" on the glue trap, because they might get off and die somewhere inaccessible or live to fight another day. Or die and stink up everything. Those traps shouldn't be left unmonitored anyway, especially by a professional. They should humanely kill any stuck animal (not only because it's the right thing to do, but the most practical too).

A mouse that's been left on a glue trap will continually shit and piss because it is frightened, it will release its contents on a regular basis, not at just a one off. That's more Hantavirus exposure, possibly. And a decomposing animal isn't exactly the most healthy thing up there.

And they don't die from "exhaustion", they either die of starvation or from their wounds trying to get off. At least kill them quickly, please don't let them (and you) suffer.