I'm a costume designer, makeup artist, teacher, mom, knitter, baker, want-to-learn-how-to-do-it-all

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I'm a costume designer, makeup artist, teacher, mom, sewer, knitter, baker, want-to-learn-how-to-do-it-all, blogging, Costumed Beagle enthusiast. I am not always pleasant, although through intensive cupcake therapy I have learned not to throw knives at people anymore.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Mouse-a-rama Beene House Drama!

Or mouse-capades as we've been calling them.  So before you go judging me about this story I'm about to tell you, I want you to know that I cleaned out my garage last October.  As in, took EVERYTHING out (I like to hose down the walls to remove dust) cleaned it all out, sorted, blah blah blah and then put it all back.

About a month ago I stepped out into the garage and there was a smell.  A kind of wet dog smell. Definitely animal something.  But we have a dog and horses back behind our house and once in awhile strange smells sort of waft through the air....


And then about a week later, I thought I heard scurrying.

And then a few days later, I had pulled into the garage, but I was listening to a story on the radio and I really wanted to finish it, so I just sat in the car in the garage listening, but the story wasn't nearly done and I was there about ten minutes just staring ahead...when I saw it.  Running along one of the shelves.

A mouse.

Of course, the smell and the scurrying had me wondering, but there was the proof.  And as I sat there a little while longer I saw another.  I know it wasn't the same one because I saw two at a time.  And the thing about mice is that whatever it is you see...well there are several more times that amount that you don't.

So I started poking around the garage, which is typically a mess right about this time of year, and moved some stuff on the shelves and sure enough, there was a LOT of evidence that a family was habitating in there.

Boo.

By last week, we couldn't go out in the garage without practically stepping on one.  There were some serious near misses and nearly peed pants going on.

But here's the thing.  I'm so stinkin' busy.  I know, you're busy too...whatever.  So I couldn't get to my little problem right away. I did stop by Lowe's and buy some traps, but I'm such a wimp.  I don't like to use poison on anything (dogs and kids, folks) and I also don't like to see dead things, so I opted for the trap that concealed the trapped rodent completely and you just throw the whole thing away.  I know this does not ease their suffering in any way, but I don't have to look at it, so it helps me.  We had a couple of mice a few years back and we did the whole live catch and release thing...but that only takes care of one at a time and based on the evidence at hand I knew we had a bigger problem than that.

My traps were out there almost a week with no action, but on Monday,  I noticed that all four had been triggered.  But the thing about traps where you can't see what you caught also means you can't tell if there is anything in there....I listened, I gently shook them, I tried to weight them against new unfilled traps in my hands.  I finally had to get the kitchen scale ( disinfected it afterward...) and they all came in about an ounce heavier, so I took it as a sign, threw them out and set new ones.

 But Monday, after all the funeral business I had the rest of the afternoon and had already bathed the demon dog and mopped the floor and had time heavy on my hands, so decided to tackle some of those shelves since I had had so much luck catching some already that day. And that's when I discovered why my garage was so popular.   Last year when I was busy being soooo awesome at activity days we made pumpkin bird feeders and I put the remaining bird seed on a shelf and then promptly forgot about it.  Not so with my mouse friends.  They had chewed open the bag and proceed to Mardi Gras that bird seed all over the place.

I then also discovered their homes.  Plural.  You know what makes a really great place to live?  Rollerblades.  Hiking boots.  Bike helmets. Snorkeling fins. Emergency Evacuation backpacks. You know what makes really great stuff to make your nice soft bed out of?  The foam on the inner part of a boogie board, knee and elbow pads and plastic kites (I kid you not about that one...A KITE).  I was amazed at the destruction that was going on out there.

THEY HAD BUILT A CITY.

This one had a tiny crack that this guy managed to enlarge
incredibly fast.
So I put on gloves and  I swept up bird seed, and basically chucked everything they had chewed up or nested in (which is a great way to get to move supposing you wanted to move), in the process uprooting and scaring the bejezus out of several mice.  While doing this, several others came out to watch.  They sat on shelves EATING A SNACK watching me clean.

So then I took a break and in less than ten minutes my second round of traps sprung.

While throwing those away I saw a little guy running around at the bottom of the trash can, so he must have been asleep in some of the boots I threw away.  I also found one at the bottom of a bucket desperately trying to leap high enough to get out.!





In all I caught 14 mice.  FOURTEEN.  Fourteen, guys. *sigh*

I still have a couple more traps out there, but haven't caught anymore since Monday.  I'm not sure we're totally clean yet, but I have to have made a significant dent.  I hope.  Please.


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