How to Lure a Mouse Out of Hiding

A mouse standing on a mouse trap with cheese

Mice are small creatures that are capable of causing tons of damage to your home and spreading unwanted diseases, and they can come in from all sides. Once these furry pests get inside your home and build a nest in the walls and air ducts, it might be difficult to get them out.

So what’s the most effective way to lure mice out of their nests? There are two effective ways to drive rodents out of hiding: using food bais to attract them outside and utilizing repellents to force them out of the nest. If you choose to bait them, bait like peanut butter will attract them outside in no time.

Attracting Mice Out of Their Nest

In 2014, it was found that around 29% of American households have experienced a rodent problem in their home at least once. The main reason why houses are attractive to rats is that homes provide them with a stable source of food they need to survive and warmth against the harsh temperature outside.

Once the pesky rodents decide that a home gives them warmth and food, they start building nests in the secluded parts of the house. They will use this nest to care for their young pups and build a colony, which is why it’s important to drive them out as soon as the first signs of mice infestation show.

How to Lure a Mice Out of Their Nest

Use Food Baits

Mice are opportunistic feeders who will consume any food that’s available to them. But when you’re trying to bait them out of the crack they are hiding in, it’s important to pick the right food bait so that the trap works effectively. High-calorie food with a strong smell will attract them out of their nest, but it’s better to choose something sticky to use in a trap.

This makes peanut butter a good bait – it attracts mice well and its stickiness will make it hard for the mouse to take the food without triggering the trap. Contrary to popular belief, cheese doesn’t really work as well as peanut butter does – mainly because cheese blocks are easy to remove from the trap if the pest is careful enough.

Drive Them Out Using Repellents

If luring them outside using food doesn’t work, forcing them out of their wall crack with repellents might do the trick. Mice have a keen sense of sight and smell that allows them to find food, but their noses are also sensitive against strong odors.

Mice dislike the scent of chemicals like ammonia and naphthalene, which makes these substances a popular choice for homemade repellents. However, the pungent smell may also be unpleasant and harmful for the family at home.

Natural smells like peppermint oil, eucalyptus, and citronella can also repel mice and force them out of the cracks in the walls. These solutions are mainly used as short-term preventive measures, but they can also be helpful if combined with other mice control techniques.

Step-by-Step Guide to Lure Mice Out of Hiding

Mouse traps are one of the best ways to put a dent in the mice population that’s infesting a home. They’re easy to use and they can provide visible results. But for a mouse trap to do its job better, lure the mouse of its nest first using their preferred food. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to force them out of hiding:

  1. Pick the right kind of bait that the mice will love. Mice that dwell in different homes might be attracted by different food, so it will take some trial and error to determine what works best for them. A dab of peanut butter will usually do the trick because mice love nuts and high-calorie food.
  2. Make sure to only put enough bait on the trap. Putting too much bait may affect the sensitivity of the trap. But if you put too little, it might not be enough to attract the pests.
  3. Place the trap outside the cracks and openings of mice nests. Finding their nest can be easy if your house pet manages to detect it with their strong senses, but you can also locate it yourself. Mice typically leave droppings near their nest. If you start smelling a foul odor and seeing more droppings, then the nest is just close.
  4. Spray repellents around the areas of the house where there are mice activity. This will limit the places where they will pass through. With their pathways narrowed down, there’s a huge chance that a mouse will find the trap and get caught.
  5. Check the trap frequently to see if it managed to trap a mouse yet or if the bait needs to be replaced.
  6. If there is a dead mouse on the trap, make sure to dispose of the carcass properly. Even when they are dead, these pests can still manage to transmit diseases. Sanitize the area and the trap before reusing it.

7 Baits You Can Use to Attract Mice Out of Hiding

The effectiveness of a mouse trap usually depends on the kind of bait used. You can buy specialty baits to tempt rodents out of their nests, but there are also food and other things in your home that can be just as effective.

Here are seven baits that can lure mice out of their nests:

1. Peanut Butter

In the wild, mice prefer eating nuts, grains, and seeds. When they move inside the house, they will start looking for high-calorie and fatty food. Peanut butter offers mice the taste of nuts that they love while satisfying the calorie content they need to survive. Other nut spreads like hazelnut spread are also effective in attracting mice.

2. Chocolate

Small pieces of chocolate can also be used as bait. Their strong smell can be detected by mice from a distance. Homeowners typically place regular chocolate and milk chocolate in the mouse trap. To find out which kind of chocolate works better in attracting mice, you will need to try them out first.

3. Seeds

Mice love the taste of seeds. They will not pass a chance to gather their favorite food if you make it available for them. These rodents will frequently stay around bird feeders to check if there are leftover seeds lying on the ground that they can eat. Seeds are also easy to carry, which is why they will attempt to gather as much as they can before heading to their nest.

4. Pet Food

Even if pets in the home are excellent mouse hunters, their food can also attract mice. The rodents will eat the leftover pet food that is left on the food bowls, which is why it’s a great idea to place mouse traps around that area.

5. Fruit Jam

Fruit jam is another affordable baiting option that can attract mice like peanut butter does. Dab a bit of fruit jam on the trap and wait for the mouse to get caught. However, fruit jam is also attractive for other house pests like cockroaches and ants. If you’re using fruit jam baits, check the trap frequently to ensure that there is enough bait left for the mice.

6. Bacon

Mice are omnivores that will consume pieces of meat. The strong smell of bacon attracts these little rodents, which makes it an effective food bait. Other deli meats can also do the trick, but they must be replaced frequently because they will easily rot at room temperature.

7. Nesting Materials

Aside from food, mice can also be attracted by the material they can use to build their nest. Dental floss, yarn, cotton, and twine are some of the nesting materials that mice can take from the home. Mice are constantly looking for these kinds of materials, so they will attempt to take these materials when they are placed out in the open.

Fast and Reliable Mice Extermination by Pinnacle Pest Control

It will take more than a few traps and baits to solve an infestation and prevent those pesky rodents from coming back. For your rodent problems at home, it’s better to call a professional exterminator like Pinnacle Pest Control.

At Pinnacle Pest Control, we offer complete rodent control services that include rodent exclusion, attic decontamination, and odor removal. Call us now to get a free quote.

Read more: Where Do House Mice Like to Build Their Nests?

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