mice extermination mice control

Mouse Trapped in Window A/C Unit

I received this email from a worried reader:

"I've got a mouse in my window a/c unit. I live in an apartment (on the first floor) but because the window unit belongs to us and not the complex, the complex refuses to do anything. The mouse just turned up this morning but has not made it into the house yet. I've got about four snap traps set up baited with peanut butter in the likeliest of place that he entered window a/c. And I've got one trap at the only know entry point INTO the house from the a/c.

Here's what I want to know...should I get rid of the whole window unit at this point? I mean, the mouse has been in there for 12 hours and has likely urinated and defecated EVERYWHERE, is cleaning the unit even possible at this point?

What can I do to prevent the mouse from getting inside and stopping further mice from climbing into my window unit.

Any help would be appreciated."
(c) instructables.com

If you are experiencing the same problem, I suggest that you remove and dismantle the a/c unit after a full 24 hours. It is still in your best interest to take out the mouse before it dies - decaying rodents in a/c units and other air vents are definitely hazardous to your health (apart from the fact that dead mice would definitely release strong foul odour).

However, since dismantling requires a lot of time and effort, it is most advised that you set up the necessary traps outside the a/c unit. The letter-sender above got it right when he placed peanut butter-baited snap traps at all the possible entry and exit points in the a/c unit. Nonetheless, if this is not effective, depending on your preference, you can either wait for the mouse to get out on its own after a few days (it will surely do so in order to look for food, unless it doesn't know how) or take out the a/c unit then free the mouse on your own.

If indeed you have figured out that the mouse can't get out on its own, you can choose between two options:

1. Deliberately kill the mouse - Well, the most obvious thing to do is to drop poisoned baits into the a/c unit.
2. Wait for the mouse to die on its own – Surprisingly, most people would only notice that a mouse is indeed trapped in their a/c unit after its decaying body would start to smell. Again, fumes from decaying animals are health hazards.

Still, the best approach is to immediately take out the window a/c unit after the mouse is discovered. Window a/c units are quite easy to take out and dismantle, but if you can't do it yourself, you can either ask a friend to do it for you or look through the yellow pages of your telephone directly and find a local window a/c serviceman or repair shop.

It is already expected that the mouse has already urinated and left droppings inside the a/c unit. Thus, upon dismantling, it is important that you sanitize the unit. You can use commercial sanitizing agents (i.e. bleach) for this purpose. Let the sanitizing agent stand for a couple of minutes or hours before rinsing the a/c parts.

To avoid such problems from happening again, I suggest that you regularly inspect your window a/c unit to see if the rodents and gradually making entry points into it; "seal" all obvious openings and place mice baits outside the a/c unit.

To the letter-sender, you should be aware too that it is still your landlord's responsibility to help you take care of the problem. Although the a/c unit is yours, it is still your landlord's obligation to keep your place free from rodents and other pests. If are willing to go through all the hassles, you can compel an uncooperative landlord to help you pay with the professional services needed to remove the mouse by sending him a copy of your total expenses -- request that these expenses be deducted from your future monthly rents. Seriously, you can take the case to a judge and be confident that you will win.

Top 3 Best Mice Traps

Mice control is so much easier if it is done prior to an infestation. You see, mice are very adaptable animals and once they have nested in a place, it would be very difficult to get rid of them (well, it would be easy if you can kill them). In this particular case, the saying "prevention is better than cure" holds true. It would have been really easier to keep your surroundings clean, to have all trash been covered or to keep wood pile on an elevated platform. Clutter and mess makes a particular area very prone to mice infestation. Nonetheless, if it took an actual infestation problem before you realize this fact, you can still make things right by addressing the infestation first and then mice-proofing your property immediately right after.

You can resort to different methods of mice control in order to eradicate the current mice population in your house. You can poison them or you can catch them one by one using mice traps. In my opinion, the latter method is better when you live with pets and kids. Sometimes, out of curiosity, pets and children would end up "feeding" on the poisoned food baits which are intended for the mice. As a result, they would also be poisoned and would possibly suffer from serious health problems. On the other hand, the most unwanted damage that the traps can do is to snap into your child's finger or your pet's nose, which may be painful but is not fatal in any way.

There are many kinds of mice traps available in the market nowadays. Apart from the traditional snap traps that have existed since time immemorial, we now have glue boards and electronic traps. Some traps can catch a single mouse per snap while others can snap five all at the same time; some are re-usable, some are not. Now, of all these traps available at our disposal, how do we choose which one is the best for specific applications? Listed below are my top 3 picks:

1. Paper/Tray Glue Traps - As per my personal opinion, these are the easiest to use and by far the most mess-free trap available in the $1 to $3 price range. Mice would end up being stuck into the glue trap and all you need to do is to dispose them outside. You can drown the mice to kill them if you can't afford to do it using your own hands (or if you want to avoid as much blood as possible). It is wise to use these traps in areas where kids and pets live too because they are not poisonous and they will not hurt them in anyway. If your children or pets happen to touch the trap, it will just stick into your pet's hair or your child's hand; you can easily remove it using oil.

2. Mice Snap Traps - If it's a contest on "most number of traps sold", then these traps will win, hands down. These traps are so popular mainly because they are cheap and they have been there ever since the concept of mice trapping has been developed.

3. Automatic Set Trap - These traps are really just like the traditional snap traps; the only difference is that the user no longer has to set the trap by himself/herself. Some people are just so afraid that these traps will snap their hands while they set it; now, with the auto-set, these worries are soon to be forgotten.

Actually, there are so many other types of traps out there. The three traps I have mentioned above just happened to be my favorites.

Common Questions about Mouse Plagues

It is said that Australia suffered the worse mouse infestation problems in 2007. This massive mouse outbreak was considered as a muse plague, a term which was never used in this place for some time already (in the 1970s, Australia also suffered from the same problems). But what is a mouse plague really? What happens when it occurs? These and so many other questions would-pop out of our minds every time this issue is raised. This article is written to give readers at least the modicum level of understanding of what a mouse plague is really all about.

What is a mouse plague?

The most prevalent determining agent of what constitute a mouse plague is massive mice infestation. When the number of mice in a hectare of land exceeds 1000, mouse plague is definitely occurring. The population can swell up to 3000 (it can't go higher than that because the mice will also compete for food). They usually infest regions that grow a lot of grains, in Australia these are the southern and the eastern regions. When mouse plagues happen, the pests can infest an entire grain barn and leave it empty overnight. The worst part is, in case when the mice are not able to consume all the grains, what's left has to be thrown away because of contamination (i.e. mouse urine, droppings, saliva, etc.). Thus is can be deduced that mouse plagues can cause very serious damages to agricultural lands. In some cases, they can even bring down an entire economy for a while and make that community suffer for the loss of income. Mice have been causing too much stress to farmers and other land owners already, even before a mouse plagues happens, so you can only imagine how stressed they become when it does.

Which places in the world do mouse plagues happen?

Excessive mice infestation does not happen in too many places in the world. One particular reason to this is that only a few regions in the world have the combined factors that make mice breeding fast and easy. In the southern and eastern portions of Australia, mice are able to reproduce incessantly because of the temperature and the overall climate of the place. Moreover, they also get enough food supply from their vast wheat lands (a mouse favourite). Other areas that have cases of mouse plagues are California and some areas in the north-western regions of China. Nonetheless, these areas do not suffer mouse plagues as much as Australia. Thus, in a relative sense, it can be said that only Australia really suffer from repeated mouse plagues.

What causes a mouse plague?

It is sure about what causes the outbreak: the supply of food. But, experts agree that this is not the only reason. While the reasons why the outbreaks happen in the southern and northern portions of Australia, it is still very apparent that they two regions have identical climates. Rainy season is a very favourable weather condition for mice and this normally happens from April to October, and the harvest period is these regions also happen during this period. This means that at the very moment when they can reproduce massively, they will also have enough access to all the food that they need. This mixed condition is probably the surest reason why Australia has had a lot of outbreaks in the past, and possibly in the future. Well, the thing about mouse plagues is that they do not last forever. The peak of the population explosion might last for 18 months and almost immediately, the population of the mice will take a very significant drop; from a thousand mice per hectare, it can drop to 1-3 mice and in a matter of weeks the plague will subside and will not come back for a couple of years.

What ends the plague?

Experts have note really understood yet why the plague ends. Some speculate that it probably happens after the mice have already consumed too much food that the supply starts to become insufficient to support their population. Other factors which might can the end of the plague are: predation, diseases and overcrowding.

Can the plague happen in one place and then occur in another?

Some people actually think that the plague can "travel". However, the truth is that it can't. Maybe to some extent, the plague may move in a small-scale level but this does not happen in a short span of time and in most cases the movement is too insignificant that it would seem as if the movement never happened at all. These slight movements take about 9 months become obvious and is often unsuccessful because right when it is complete, the harvest in the area where they opt to migrate is also finished. Nevertheless, is the climate is still favourable to the mice, there is still very high chance that a good portion of their population will make it into the next location and start to reproduce in this area again.

How do we minimize plague damage?

When mouse plagues happen, it is imperative that a massive population control program be implemented. Although the plague would naturally subside on its own, this natural death happens in 18 months -- a period too long for farmers to wait. This duration is also enough to kill an entire economy. Thus, the government would actually really invest a good amount of money just to cut down the mice's population as fast as possible. One particular example is the action done by the Australian government in 2007. The government has commissioned planes to spread poisoned baits throughout the southern and northern regions in order to kill thousands if not millions of mice at once. Immediately a day after the poison was spread, farmers practically started to walk on dead mice on the ground.

Other methods used to minimize the damage caused by the plague includes: cleaning after a harvest (removing grains from the ground), weeding, fencing and regular cultivation. It is important that the farmlands are constantly visited by people so that the mice will not feel as if they can live in the area without a threat.

Mice in Space

November last year, space shuttle "Discovery" left Earth along with six astronauts and guess what -- 16 astro-mice! The mice are brought for a specific reason and it is said that they are destined to make history. The astronauts and the mice went to space in order to know more about the effects of the new environment to the overall health of humans and animals. This is in line with the current efforts of the NASA to get substantial data in order to verify if humans can indeed survive in space, come the time when the Earth will no longer be liveable.

NASA has been researching about the behaviour and condition of the human's immune system when it is in space. The people behind the study want to assess if the change in gravity as well as the overall environmental factors which are exclusive to Earth will also alter a human's capability to combat harmful bacteria and diseases. Of course, since this task is too risky for a human to test on himself/herself, the astronauts brought with them the mice so that they can be put into the test first. We have all known of the great help that mice have given humanity when we began testing genetic mutation on them. Decades ago, we even started to grow human tissues in their bodies -- things which helped save thousands of lives already. This time, the experts are again soliciting the help of these rodents to again achieve another great feat, something which would have been really impossible if the mice where not around.

This particular research by NASA has been there for more than 25 years already. NASA has even partnered with the University of Texas for this endeavour. The goal of the medical branch of the University is to find a way to help those who currently have immune system problems on Earth (HIV positive) while the intentions of NASA is highly futuristic. Well, their goals might be different but the two agencies are working hand in hand to achieve the same thing, which I think, is what's more important.

NASA started to pay attention to immune system problems after the astronauts from the Apollo missions showed decreased susceptibility to diseases when they came back. Even while they are still in space, many of the scientists became ill, although they never have records of being sick before they left Earth. The only sensible explanation that NASA can think of is that maybe there is something is space that makes a human's immune system suffer. This theory is yet to be tested, and that is the reason why they brought mice into space.

The thing is, the mice should experience the same immune system problems that the astronauts have suffered and if they don't, then that's the angle that the NASA is particularly itching for. The idea is that when the mice do not become affected by the change in environment, the experts would have to make deductions that the effects are exclusive to humans, something which brings to the surface so many interesting questions. These questions are vital in determining whether humans can indeed live outside Earth.

A professor in the University of Texas, Dr. Garofalo said that the susceptibility of the astronauts to bacterial infection might be caused by the dormancy of their bodies while they are in space. Once they start the spaceflight again, their bodies no longer have enough time to adjust back to the movement and so it becomes weak. This theory is of course not founded yet, but D. Garofalo is convinced that this might be the real case. He compared the susceptibility to the astronauts to that an elderly or a child and the best way to verify this is to subject the mice into the test (mice have similar systems as humans).

In order to keep the research fail-safe, the researchers have also kept the same number of mice on the ground, inside their laboratories on Earth. These mice came from the same bloodline as the mice which are brought in space. Both the mice on Earth and in space are given the same nourishment. The end goal of the research is to compare the health conditions of the two groups of mice and see if the group in space will become more vulnerable to the same infections by introducing them to the bacteria that cause it. Once the mice have been exposed to the bacteria, they will be examined and the researchers are hoping that they would finally be able to identify the reasons why the immune system is weakened in space.

The lungs and the other organs of the mice will be inspected and using various statistical data and sampling, the researchers will compare the changes in these organs and identify which factors caused these changes. Scientists are very confident that the mice will be able to give them substantive results since these little rodents have been doing this for the past few decades.

Other Functions of Mice in Space

Apart from helping scientists in their researches on the human's immune system, mice are also used by astronauts in space to verify if the absence of gravity can indeed affect the sense of direction of an animal. The research involves having mice breed in space and then allowing the pregnant mice to give birth to their child in space. For comparison, a pair of mice from the same bloodline is also mated on Earth at the same time. The two pregnant mice will give birth at the same time and their offspring will be tested by dropping the two critters into an aquarium full of water. The critter from space was brought back to the ground for a side by side comparison. The results were impressive. The mouse from space was not able to redirect its body so that its feet are aligned to hit the ground. The mouse from Earth only took a second to position itself to hit the ground with its feet.

The Greener Approach to Rodent Control

There is no doubt that some people can find great pleasure in keeping rats and mice as pets. However, outside this context, these rodents are actually very terrible pests. They can provide incalculable damages to our properties and to our health. In fact, millions of dollars are being wasted away each year because of these animals. Over the past years, we have developed tons of methods used to control them in order to minimize the damages that they can do. However, most of these methods are chemical-based and unfortunately, such chemicals can greatly harm the environment. Thus, in the end, although mice are indeed controlled by the methods used, the amount of damage is still not minimized.

But it's not just the environment that these chemical-based control products harm. One characteristic common to most rat and mouse poisons is their slow-killing ability. This means that only a few types of poisons can kill mice and rats on the spot. Most of them kill the rodents slowly by weakening their internal organs or by forcing their bodies to bleed internally. Apart from the cruelty of this method, it can also pose serious threats to the other animals in the house. For example, a mouse or a rat dying from the poison might run lose and get the chance to encounter your pet dog or cat. You might might eat or play with dying or dead rodents and poison them in the process.

These are the reasons why greener approaches to rodent control always make it big whenever they are introduced into the market, at least when it comes to popularity. For obvious reasons, products which are "Earth-friendly" are more expensive to produce and this reflects in the cost of these products. Thus, no matter how popular these products are, too few people still use them because of the cost. Nevertheless, manufacturers are putting forth some extra efforts to be able to make these products more affordable. So, expect to get one of those "green mouse/rat control" products at a friendly price in a couple of years from now.

Of course, we can't just wait until all these products are made available for us. Actually, we can improvise and control mice in our own way by using items which we can find at home and in our pantry. We can also "mouse-proof" our homes in order to discourage mouse entry. Here are some of my ideas:

1. I used to live in a brick house. I have noticed that mice often use the gaps between the bricks to enter our kitchen, but I can't really seal the gaps because bricks need them in order to expand safely. The physical characteristics of bricks are greatly affected by the weather. It can contract or expand depending on the surrounding temperature, thus the gaps are intentionally placed in order to avoid breaking whenever the bricks expand. Knowing that I can't do much about the gaps, I "sealed" the gabs by using a crumpled chicken wire. The wire was sufficient to discourage mice entry while not completely sealing up the gap, thus still giving the bricks space to expand.

2. For houses which are not made from bricks, sealing should be easier. Owners should inspect every corner of their house in order to identify possible entry points. The easiest way to seal the openings is through the use of steel wool or scourers (usually used for cleaning cooking pots). Steel wools are very affordable and they can be bought per piece. Scourers can be cut to the right sizes using industrial scissors.

3. It is common knowledge that mice and rats are attracted to garbage. These rodents like to nibble on everything found in the trash can including leftover foods and vegetable peelings. Thus, it is wise if the homeowner covers all the trash bins in the house with lids which are not easy to remove. As much as possible the lids should perfectly fit the trash bin's opening so that the rodents will not be able to sneak in the gaps. For compost bins outside the house, homeowners are advised to elevate them. The elevation will make the bin less easy to penetrate. However, if the bin is indeed elevated, homeowners should make sure that the bottom portion of the bin is drilled with holes in order to let the moisture of the compost leave the bin.

4. Rodents prefer to nest indoors but they can also nest outdoors. If you have already sealed your house, chances are, the mice and rats might have just settled to nest outside. To stop them from doing so, make sure that you clear your yard from any forms of debris piles. Mice also nest under firewood and rock piles. If the piles are inevitable, practice disturbing these piles on a regular basis just to give the mice a hint that they will not be at peace under these piles. Mice do not like disturbances thus if you do it often, they will definitely leave your property on their own.

5. It is also helpful if you conduct regular clean-ups in your kitchen area and in the other places in your house where mice are most likely to nest. Mice require very little sustenance so even a very small portion of leftover food can encourage them to stay in your area and forage where you have these leftover food lying around.

6. You will know if your area is really prone to rat or mice infestation. If you are certain that despite all the safety measures that you have done, mice and rats might still come in your place, change all your trash bins to metal ones. Do no use plastic trash bins anymore because mice have this twisted thought about anything that they can chew. They will only attempt to chew on your plastic bins and in the long run, they might actually succeed in doing so.

7. Just like squirrels, mice and rats also feed on bird seeds. If you have a bird feeder at home, just make sure that you place it far from your house so that the rodents that happen to find out about it will not be tempted to visit your house. As much as possible, cleanout fallen fruits the soonest that they fall from the tree as these too can encourage mice and rats to come into your residence.

Storage Tips to Keep Mice Off Your Stuff

Once pest mice get into your stuff, terrible and horrible things can happen. Inside your closet, they can rip open your underwear, your socks and even your favorite shirt! Inside the pantry, they can nibble through the boxes containing your precious food items. In your garage, they can mess up with the tools that you have just neatly arranged. And in your car, they can ruin your expensive seat covers and floor mat. But these things could have been avoided if you have properly kept you items. Protecting your stuff from mice is actually very simple to do and believe me, you will regret it when you do not spend enough time to read this article and learn how you can control mice by yourself. Here are my top 10 tips:

1. If you are moving a piece of furniture into storage (maybe in the attic, basement, garage or a separate storage room), clean it attentively. That means that you need to thoroughly vacuum the surface of the furniture to remove every dust that clings into it. Clean out all the stains and the little pieces of debris that are stuck in the crevices and in the cracks of the furniture. You'll never know, but those little pieces of debris might only attack mice to jump into your furniture and start to nibble the cracks to get those tiny pieces one by one. If you want to keep you furniture safe, then spend enough time to clean it. Once it is clean, you can choose to cover it with fabric or with plastic covers to keep the dust off it and to discourage mice to come near it.

2. For the same reason as above, clean all your appliances no matter how big or how small. The little bread crumbs that are left in your toaster's tray might invite mice to come into your kitchen more often and eventually discover that they are more stuff to eat there than just plain bread crumbs. You don't want that to happen, do you? So, the best thing that you can do is to wipe your appliances clean until all the traces of food are gone. Apart from mice, ants, bugs and other pests are attracted to left-over food, so you better be serious about this one.

3. For your clothes, especially those that you no longer use and store in boxes, it is highly advisable for you to put moth balls (naphthalene balls) inside the box too. The moth balls produce a very strong smell that mice find detestable. Moreover, when mice nibble the moth balls, they will surely die too, that's enough discouragement for them not to. The good thing about moth balls is that these balls do not stain the contents of the box. They will just "melt" away slowly, thus, if you are observant enough, you will notice that the moth balls are getting smaller and smaller over time. The reason behind this is that the smell that it produces is actually from its portion that "melts" and transform into gas. If you do not like the smell of moth balls, you can also try cedar-scented mouse-repelling sachets and block. These products are more expensive that they smell fragrant, thus your garments will not get that naphtalene-ish smell, and instead, they will smell like cedar which is very appealing to the human senses. An entire sachet of cedar-scented repellents can last for up to four months, that's enough if you are only storing your items for a while, say, you are in a vacation or a business trip. If you plan to store them a little bit longer, just change the sachet after four months.

4. Except if you are really an anti-pesticide advocate, feel free to use pesticides. You can use contained insecticides if you are concerned about your pets and of other factors. You can use these to add an extra security system to your storage, so that before they even reach your storage boxes, they are already dead. For mice, you can use popular pesticide products like Racumin which kills mice on the spot. On-the-spot killing is important because if the mice get to move even for a while after they have eaten the poison, they might end up inside your storage and die there. Dead mice like other dead animals can produce some really nasty smell.

5. If you are using mouse traps to improve the security of your storage system, do not use cheese as bait, instead, use peanut butter. It is a common misconception that mice like to eat cheese (blame that to Tom and Jerry). Mice prefer sweeter stuff and you use peanut butter because apart from being sweet, it is also very sticky. By being sticky, the mouse has to lick it off the trap, increasing the possibility of the trap to snap and catch the mouse.

6. Herbs are also effective deterrents. You can put herbs in the corners of your house to discourage mice from coming-in in the first place. You can use catnip (the "cat" part of the name of this herb and the natural ability of cats to scare mice is a coincidence), lavender, sage and mint to repel mice. Although these herbs may not be as effective as the chemical-based repellents, still they are good options for you to try. Mice are said to be extremely allergic to mint so you might want to give mint a try.

7. If you must keep food in containers, prefer to use containers that mice cannot penetrate with their extremely sharp teeth. You can use glass containers with screw lids or plastic containers with snap lips. The rationale here is simple, if mice will not get into your food, they will starve to death inside your house if they will stay. As a normal response, the mice will leave your house and find another place where they can actually find food to eat.

8. Some scented candles actually produce smell that mice are attracted to. Avoid storing candles during warm weathers as they can melt and invite mice to come close.

Exquisite Mice Recipes for Beginners :)

To a lot of people, cooking and eating mice is unthinkable. But in some portions of the world, mice make up an important role in their native delicacies. In fact, in North America, people eat rat because of their nutritional value (being rich in protein), while in some parts of Paris, mice are eaten because they taste like a crossbreed between chicken and pork. And yet, to the rest of the world, mice have become a stable source of meat that can be cooked in many different ways. Some restaurants even have mice in their menus. Thus, no matter how unthinkable it may seem to you, mice cooking and eating is actually an old practice and many people are so into it ever since.

The common house mouse has been very popular in West Africa that about 50% of all the locally produced meat there mouse or rat meat. To be exact with numbers, according to the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, more than 250 thousand pounds of mouse and rat meat are sold in the market of Accra alone. So, here are some of the recipes that are quite popular among the mice-eating people:

Grilled Mouse Bordeaux

The other name of this recipe, "Entrecote a la bordelaise", sounds like any other classy food you can get from a high-class restaurant. Well, in fact, this mouse meat recipe is served in popular restaurants in Paris! The skin of the mouse is removed before it is eviscerated and glazed with an exquisite sauce made from a mixture of olive oil, some shallots and other spices. The meat is then grilled over a fire made from old and broken wooden wine barrels.

Mouse Stew

Just like the meat in the Mouse Bordeaux, the mouse is also skinned and eviscerated when cooking Mouse Stew. The mouse's body is then split into two from the neck down to the tail bone and then battered with a mixture of butter, peanut oil and some spices. The battered meat is then deep-fried until it turns golden brown. The fried mouse meat will then be covered with an elegant sauce mixed from water, fresh tomatoes, red peppers and some other spices. For the meat to absorb the taste of the sauce, the entire dish is simmered for a couple of minutes and then served hot with rice.

Stuffed Mouse Dormice

The mouse is skinned and eviscerated; head, tail and feet removed. The stuffing is made from ground meat (can be mouse meat, pork, beef or chicken) mixed with pine nuts, garum or anchovy paste, asafoetida, homemade broth and other spices. The mouse is stuffed with the stuffing and then sewn properly before it is cooked in the oven for a prescribed length of time.

Roasted Mice

The best mice to use for this recipe are the field mice primarily because of their meat is not as tender as that of a house mouse, thus it is very fitting for a roasting recipe. The mice is skinned and eviscerated before it is skewered and roasted over hot coals. This recipe is best eaten with Margarita.

Creamed Mouse

Just like all other recipes, the mouse should be cleaned out of the head, feet and tail. It should be skinned too and the rest of the internal organs should be removed. The meat is then marinated in a pot of a mixture of ethyl alcohol and some spices. After marinating for at least 2 hours, the meat should be dredge into a batter mixture consisting of flour, salt, pepper and some spices. The battered meat is then fried under a low fire for about 5 minutes before another cup of alcohol is added into the pan. Along with the alcohol, about 8 cloves of garlic are also added. The mixture is to be simmered for another 15 minutes before it is transferred to a pan of cream sauce. The meat is sautéed for another 10 minutes before it becomes ready for serving.

Mouse Enchiladas

The mouse should be skinned and eviscerated before it becomes fit for cooking. In this specific recipe, the mouse is cooked in a regular enchilada sauce made from chillis mixed with liquor. Chile skin is supposed to be separated from chilli meat before it is mixed with the liquor and some fried onions. The tortillas are to be filled with the mouse meat mixed with the enchiladas sauce, rolled and then baked for about 15 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

You see, there are so many other great-tasting mouse dishes out there that are not mentioned in this article. Although it is really quite ironic how such wonderful dishes were derived from an animal most people consider as pest, still one truth remains, the people behind these recipes are really able to bring out another dimension of the mice. They may not be as main stream as chicken, beef and pork, but with all honesty, people who were able to eat game and veal can be outnumbered by those who have already tasted mouse meat at least once in their lifetimes.

We can't really say which cuisine is exotic or not simply because we do not eat certain kinds of foods. To some places, the normal food that we are eating may be categorized as exotic and the foods that we consider exotic might be categorized as normal to them. This diversity in taste and preference is what makes the different cuisines around the world unique.

Of course, I am not encouraging you to feed on the mouse that you see in your house simply for the purpose of establishing that a new predator (that's you) has just emerged in their habitat (that's your house). There are some findings too that suggest that improper preparation can also cause food poisoning. The preparation of mouse meat may not be as easy as you think, so if ever you are enticed to taste mouse meat one of these days, better go to a restaurant instead and just enjoy your experience without having to worry about other things.

All the best,
Sergiu Zburatoru

Factors Affecting Mouse Infestation

It was epic when Australia faced a very serious mouse infestation problem that lasted for more than two years several years ago. While it is quite normal for grain-growing areas to have serious problems with mice, what happened to Australia that time is by far the worse mouse infestation problem ever recorded in human history. On average, those who study mouse behavior say that serious infestations can happen once in every 4-10 years with each incident lasting for up to 2 straight years. The infestation usually follows after a very high-yielding cropping season.

Apart from the increased productivity of the land, mouse population outbreaks are also triggered by any of the following:

1. When the farming practice in a specific land in routinely changed to ensure continued productivity of different kinds of crops. In context of farming, crop rotation is often a good practice because it allows the land to breathe and increase its nutrient content. However, mice are also drawn into the farms because there is a continuous supply of food for them in these places by virtue of crop rotation.

2. When the farm is left undisturbed for a reasonably long time. Sometimes, because of good quality seeds and climate, farmers no longer till as often as they normally would. When cultivation is least, mice can freely roam around the farmlands without fear of being disturbed by human presence. Thus, they can reproduce without constraints.

3. Apart from humans, animals that graze can also scare away mice. However, when the grazing in the farm is reduced due to certain reasons, then again, mice would be able to roam around the farm without any fear whatsoever.

Farmers are already aware that each time they improve their farming practice in order to increase productivity; they are also opening bigger doors for mice infestation to occur. Over the years, this has been an acceptable trade-off. However, this supposed balance between increased income and increased damage is always compromised each time the infestation lasts longer that it ought to be or when the number of mice infesting exceeds what has been expected, something which can result to incalculable damages.

The possible reasons why a mouse infestation can last more than the average two-year duration are:

1. The breeding season of mice is extended. This happens when the mice start to breed early and ends the season late. A little discrepancy in the number of days mice breed is already sufficient to increase their population beyond what is expected.

2. Sometimes, when food remains plentiful even after two years of infesting, mice will opt to stay and feed some more. It is instinctive for mice to stay in a place where they are well-provided for and a farm with a lot of produce is the most ideal place for them.

3. Oftentimes, when an infestation occurs, farmers will also try to hunt down mice and chase them out of the farm although they know that the infestation will not ward off just like that. However, this procedure can greatly reduce the number of mice in an area. Thus, an extended infestation can be a result of the presence of a good nesting site. If the nesting site of the mice are well-hidden from farmers, their reproduction will be least disturbed.

4. Another huge factor that helps in mouse infestation control is the presence of natural predators. When the predators are severely outnumbered by the mice, then definitely, they will contribute so little in the control of these pests.

5. Mice population is also reduced in the two-year infestation period because of diseases and parasites. However, in the absence of these two, there is a high chance for mice to thrive longer than two years.

How About Plagues Caused by Mice?

It should be clear that mice are least likely to spread plagues because the only time this becomes possible is when their population reaches at least a thousand mice in a hectare of land. This is quite impossible to reach because at 100 mice per hectare, tremendous damage can already occur. Thus, food supply will not permit mice to reach the 1000 per hectare quota. Therefore, when it comes to mouse infestation, the real issue is not in human health or anything else, it is really more about crop damage.

So, what are these damages that we are talking about?

Mice like to eat what humans also love to eat. In most cases, they tend to damage cropping areas that produce cereals, maize, legumes, sorghum and pulses. They also like the vegetables that humans are so in need of. Examples of such are:

a) Peas, beans and other high-protein vegetables
b) Zucchini and other delicious green veggies
c) Tomatoes
d) Eggplants
e) Melons and the fruits of crawly veggies

It is easy to spot a damage caused by a mouse. Since these pests are nibbling rodents, they usually leave obvious tracks behind them. Examples of such evidences are: a chewed leaf (you will know when a leaf is chewed when you see one), seeds with missing heads (mice always prefer eating the head part) and some bits and pieces of farm produce just scattered around.

In general, because mice love to nibble, they usually attack portions of the crop that are easiest to chew. These portions are the flowering node of the crop and the maturing heads of the seeds which are exposed. Since the crop flowers and seeds are both fundamental to crop productivity, the damages that mice can cause to them can result to a pre-harvest loss amounting to about 50% of the supposed harvest.

Thus, whenever mice attack during pre-harvest, farmers usually use zinc-phosphide baits in order to control their population. Farmers also place baits around their barns in order to discourage mice from entering the place. Nevertheless, these practices have been always insufficient in completely exterminating mice infesting in a farm. The most that control methods can do is to prevent mice population from growing too big since the size of the population is directly related to the total amount of damage.

All the best,
Sergiu Zburatoru

Killing Mice for a Living

Mice can do much economic damage not because they consume farm goods and produce but because they can contaminate great magnitudes of goods and produce by simply crawling through them. They can make food unsafe for consumption through their urine or through their droppings. Moreover, their bodies (their hair and wet noses most especially) can carry so much disease-causing viruses and bacteria that a short contact with it can already make food and other goods threats to the human health.

However, as much as mice can cause damage and waste earnings, the many cases of mice infestations around the world have also made so many people rich. By establishing pest control companies that specializes on mouse extermination, many mouse-busters have become millionaires. Indeed, these people have made a living through killing mice. You can be one of these successful mouse exterminators. Of course, you can't just dive into the business as you are right not, you have to learn so stuff first before you can establish for yourself a pest control company. This article is written to show you how. While this article does not promise to tell you everything that you need, it is be sufficient to give you a good idea as to how you are going to start your future business right. I hope you will find this article helpful.

Feasibility Study

You don't have to own a master's degree in Business Administration in order to conduct a fairly good feasibility study. All you need to do is to ask around your place about the needs of the people there with respect to mouse infestation. Make a simple checklist and questionnaire which you can give to everyone in the neighborhood. The questionnaire might include some questions like these:

1. Do you have pest mouse problems at home?

2. What have you done to solve the problem?

3. Have you ever hired a professional mouse exterminator in the past?

4. Do you think a pest exterminator in the neighbourhood can help you?

The list can go on and on, add questions which you feel will help you understand how the people in your neighborhood think about for-hire pest extermination. Do not just conduct the survey in one place, you can scout some other locations as well and try to conduct a survey there. Give your respondents some incentives for participating in your survey, incentives often encourage people to be more cooperative. You may try giving away stuff that is related to the business you are making a feasibility study of. For example, since you are making a feasibility study for mice extermination, you might want to give away free mouse traps or rodenticides to your respondents. You have to invest a little in your feasibility study; anyway, if you have started doing business in a place where you will not be a hit, you definitely waste a lot of money.

Educate Yourself

If you are starting a small-scale pest control business, then it is in your best interest to keep a close look in your business. It is not wise to dive into a business which you have no knowledge of. It is also too risky for you to hire someone else to administer your business especially when you are still starting, so it is always better if you educate yourself about your business and then run it yourself.

You might want to enrol to a pest control vocation class first. You can also learn online through reading a lot of materials but learning pest control in a school is much better because you get to learn by experience and you get to be taught by exterminators who have been in the job for so long. Another good thing about learning extermination from a school is the fact that schools confer diplomas and certificates. You can use these documents to make your pest control company more legit and more credible in the sight of your future clients. If possible, join a lot of seminars and conferences about pest control in order to fully equip yourself with the knowledge that you need. You don’t have to be the exterminator yourself because you can hire exterminators to work for you; however, in order to administer your exterminators better, you have to know how they do their stuff.

Follow the Set of Rules and Guidelines

The government and its licensing department are also very strict when it comes to giving pest control companies licenses to operate. This level of strictness is primarily due to the fact that pest control companies are usually given the privilege to use rodenticides and other mice poisons which are not to be sold to common homeowners. These chemicals need to be handled properly so the government asks pest control companies to join seminars and conferences. Do not bend the rules and pay yourself out of it. There is a good reason why the government is strict and you have to understand the rationale behind these reasons.

If you are required to have certain documents before you are allowed to operate or to use a certain kind of mouse poison, then you have to follow the requirement. It is very important for you to establish a name first before you start "thinking for the company's welfare". Since you are still starting as a neighborhood pest control agent, you have to win the approval of the people around you and one way of doing this is by showing them that you follow the rules and that you care about the service that you give, not just the money that your get out of the service.

Winning Clients' Approval

In most cases, it is always a good business strategy to make your clients think that they are very important. There are many ways to make your client feel so; one very simple way is to give them give discounts and extra services simply for opting to hire you. You have to be careful though, you don't want to make your business look cheap by hinting your clients that you are so desperate to win their approval that's why you are giving away unbelievable discounts. Be creative in sending the message that your company will take care of them and their homes. It is also very helpful if you train your employees to be always pleasant to your clients.

It is very normal for people to like servicemen who are pleasant to them. Make your employees look presentable; being an exterminator does not mean that your employee has to look like a killer or a vampire or something. While it is ridiculous to put your exterminators in coats and ties, it is always a good idea to put them in a clean and "trustworthy" uniform. Always remember that in business, the packaging is always very important. But that does not mean that you concentrate on the packaging alone. You should also make sure that your employees are well equipped with the skills and knowledge that is needed for them to properly do their job and to give your clients a good experience with your company. Quality service will definitely result to an increase in the number of clients.

Yes, killing mice a.k.a mice extermination can be done for a living!

All the best,
Sergiu Zburatoru

Mice Extermination Methods to Avoid

Mice are undeniably destructive vermin that has to be dealt with right away. They gnaw on almost everything and they carry levels of diseases and sometimes some of them would prove to be very fatal. They can kill a person and even kill an entire population just like what happened in the bubonic plague where almost the entire population of Europe was reduced. As of today, it still continues to kill people but in more minute scale. Another bothersome result of having these pest mice around is the gnawing damages that will most likely to take place every other day. They will keep gnawing their way on not only to your food, but as well as your appliance's wirings, until your appliances will cease to function. This is a likely scenario when you are having a pest mice infestation inside your household. In a nutshell, these are the reasons why you should get rid of the pest mice right away from your house.

Getting rid of mice is not just throwing them away outside your house or killing a mouse per day basis. Dealing with the pest mice problem would entail the employment of more serious and severe means and definitely not for the squeamish. It might get bloody and messy every after catches but it something you would have to risk in order to safeguard your household members from the potential fatal attacks of the vermin. If you are truly squeamish and could not handle the idea of mice blood spattered all around when they're killed or the idea of having dead mice carcass littered everywhere itself grosses you out, then you either hire an exterminator to handle the job or ask someone who is as determined but less squeamish than you (probably your husband or boyfriend and vice versa) to take care of the mice hunting job. I wouldn't suggest taking the former suggestion right away as it should be a last resort. Considering how much spending you will have to incur when hiring professional exterminators, it is just natural that you take them as your last option when everything else fails. But if you are well-able to hire their services on a whim, then there's nothing wrong with it.

However, it you are someone who merely earns averagely, it would be wise for you to fully optimize the usage of other conventional means to deal with the mice problem. Cost efficiency is important to underscore when employing methods and devices that rid of mice and being cost efficient simply means getting the desired results with less expense as possible. And that would entail a lot preponderance and scrutiny with the device or method that is going to be used with a clear picture of expenditure figure in your head. Budget allocation is also important to become cost efficient. This is crucial because it enables you to limit your expenses and curtail it according to your decided amount of investment. From your allocated budget you can spawn expenses scheme and itemizations as which devices will you buy and which ones to buy first as well as which ones can be condoned.

There are actually many devices and methods one would be able to employ in a limited budget. Contrary to popular belief that the more you spend the more effective your means could get, being able to get an efficient device without having to spend too much is way even better. Also, expense and efficiency's direct proportionality isn't always true. It may be true to purchasing computer units or mobile phones, but when it comes to pest mice dealings, you can be as less spending as you want but still effectively deal with your infestation. Now the devices you can avail of may not be very expensive however, their efficiency solely depends on how you apply them. In short, you maneuver these devices to your advantage. This means you have to use your analytical skills in finding the right location for the devices, or the exact opportunity to apply a particular method, or making use of the right accessory to a technique; these are all very important considerations in pest mice control.

However, there is hierarchy among the devices and methods to be used in dealing with pest mice. Some even are not even worth considering anymore. And these are the list of devices and methods that you should consider less using as they are not as efficient or dysfunctional to begin with.

1. Rodenticides

Although they are highly effective in killing mice as they can go all genocide to ever mice inhabitant in the household they are also very unsafe to use. Rodenticides as you already know are poisons that kill mice. You may place them on the right locations; however, you can't expect accidents to have admonitions first before happening. So no matter where you effectively conceal them from plain sight, there is still the risk of finding their way to the wrong hands, especially your kids or your mindless dogs who would probably take it as dog food. A single pellet ingestion of this poison can prove to be quite fatal to other critters, as well as humans. If you are to use a rodenticide, just make sure that you place them as your last resort antecedent to hiring professional exterminators.

2. Zappers

A Zapper is device that produces electrical charges to electrocute and shock the mice when it comes in contact with it. They cost around $25 dollars each and by far that is the problem - they are not cost efficient at all. Think about it, you would purchase $25 worth device to catch a mouse? And if you have a whole family of mice or more in your house, should you purchase more of it proportionate to the number of the mice inhabitants? It's just impractical, not to mention that these devices eat batteries like crazy, so you don't only spend too much for purchasing the device, the batteries will also kill you afterward.

3. Ultrasonic Devices

At some time, these devices were becoming very popular to households across the states even across the globe. An ultrasonic gadget is a device that apparently emits high frequency electronic waves or sometimes sound waves that jams the vermin's sense of hearing and allegedly deters them from ever inhabiting your house. However, it wasn't only until later that it was found out that the devices don't work with rodents or mice at all. They may work effectively with insect pests as they are more sensitive to sound waves, but not with mice. When the whole world found out about it, the government immediately made implementations to ban them and take them out from market circulation. If you haven't heard of this news yet, now you know. Avoid purchasing ultrasonic devices anymore as they may not work to your advantage at all. Not to mention that such devices would cost around 30 USD. Would you invest as much as that for something that doesn't work?

4. Towel Trap

By far the most ridiculous method of trapping and getting rid of mice ever innovated. What the method actually makes you do is that you will throw a towel on the mice to temporarily maim its movements. Then you will place an inverted container deep and big enough for the mice to fall into. Then tuck the towel inside the container then place a large piece of cardboard under the towel and basket. The question then is "And then what?" you have just spent a painstaking 3 minute process in your life just to catch a single mouse? Then I suppose you will throw that a mile away from your place? Think about it.

So this is basically what you should know about mice extermination and the mice extermination methods that you should avoid!

All the best,
Sergiu Zburatoru

Two Separate Views of Mice: Pets and Pests

The similarity of how pets and pests are spelled out is very cunning, especially when the pest or pet in question are mice. While in many parts of the world mice are considered to be one of the most dreaded pests capable of causing damages that can amount to millions of dollars, in some households, mice are also considered as lovable pets, equal to dogs and cats, and even to little children. It is quite difficult to imagine how the liking of these people towards mice has come to being, but the fact alone that most pet shops all around the world already include pet mice in their display means that many pet lovers are not considering mice as animals worthy of love and care.

White Mice Popularity

By examining the mice displayed in most pet shops, one would quickly realize that the mice sold are mostly white. Of course, there are other rodents sold in these pet shops too (hamsters and guinea pigs are popular examples) and these rodents come in different colors: white, brown, gray, or a combination thereof. However, in the case of pet mice, pet shops only sell white ones. Why is this so?

According to a research conducted to examine the behaviour of pet lovers towards mice, it was found out that black mice (or gray mice) are mostly related to the idea of being a "pest", thus, pet shops selling black or gray mice are most likely to end up not attracting buyers into their store. On top of this, many people have the tendency to appreciate white mice because of their "cotton ball" appearance. As a conclusion, pet mice sold in pet shops are mostly white because of the buyers' tendency to discriminate black or gray mice.

Laboratory mice are also mostly white. While the same reason still holds, researchers also realize that while mice are easier to work on with because of their almost translucent fur color. Since laboratory mice are usually used for testing drugs that are intended for human consumption, it is always better if the change in the physical appearance of the mouse being tested can easily be detected. Gray and black mice are not popular choices because their physical appearance hinders experts to easily study them.

Pet Mouse's Pest Tendencies

In general, even though pet mice are treated as "pets" and are given food for nourishment instead of bait, these rodents are still very much alike house pest mice. They also nibble around, that is why it is almost impossible to keep a pet mouse and not cage it (Stuart Little is of course an exception to this). Like pest mice, pet mice also scurry here and there that's why their cages are supposed to be always equipped with wheels which they can use to run endlessly. These wheels are also used in cages where hamsters and guinea pigs are kept. Moreover, like pests, pet mice also do not consume their food right away. They like to nibble every now and then too, that's why pet mice cages are supposed to have a food container inside it where pet food is supposed to be constantly present.

In the event that pet mice are taken out of their cages, they will always have the tendency to nibble on almost anything, just like a plain pest mouse. They would still bite electrical wires, nibble socks and documents. In short, pet mice and pest mice are similar; the only clear difference between them is how they are viewed by the people who live with them under the same roof.

Having said so, this means that even the litters of pest mice found in your house can also be taken cared of like pets, although this idea is not really very palatable to most people. The simple rationale is: if the supposed "pet mouse lover" is perfectly fine to treat a mouse nicely, then definitely, he or she should be able to do the same to a mouse that happens to be not tagged with a price by some random pet shop. Nonetheless, it has been found out that most of these pet owners would not equate themselves to people who tolerate the presence of pest mice in their house. Simply put that although most of these pet owners are well aware about the lack of difference between a pet mouse and a pest mouse, they still do not look at pest mouse as an equal to a pet mouse.

Why Mice Become Pests?

If the place in question is a farm or a barn, there is no question why mice become pests. For obvious reasons, field mice feed on farm produce and of course, no farmer can perfectly enclose a farm so as not to permit the entry of at least a couple of mice. By definition, the term pest is referred to insects or animals that jeopardise the overall economic gain of certain individuals or groups. For example, ants are considered pests if have become too many that a sugar factory has to dispose of some products because the damage they have done. Termites are also considered as pests when they are already compromising the structure of a certain building or establishment. In the case of field mice, they have been classified as the "super pests" because of their tendency to come in a huge group. As an example, there was a very popular photo taken in Argentina in 1970s of a "mouse hunt" conducted for three days where farmers are able to kill 70,000 adult mice!

Bringing the subject into the very boundaries of our home, mice are considered pests mostly because of their capability to transmit diseases and their endless need to nibble around. Many homeowners have awoken into the nightmare of seeing their cereal boxes and other food stuff nibbled and contaminated by mice. Some homeowners have also faced terrible accidents like electrical malfunctions due to electrical wires cut and nibbled by mice. Moreover, the long list of diseases that mice carry in their bodies have been the main reason why many people panic at the very thought that mice are already infesting in their homes.

The End of Pestering

However, if homeowners only realize that pest mice are so much like pet mice, they would realize that these mice will not be able to do them any harm if in the first place they will not allow them to enter their houses, in the same way that pet owner are so careful about keeping their pet mice inside their cages. Pet mice will become "pest mice" the moment they get out of their cages, in the same way; house mice only become pests in your house if you allow them to get inside.

There are so many ways to mouse proof a house. In fact, there are so many books and blogs too that are written to help homeowners do this on their own. In the end, no matter how you view mice, whether as pets or pests, some things remain the same: (1) mice are very inquisitive in nature, this often always make them exposed to different disease-causing viruses and germs and (2) mice will always like to nibble, their front teeth are designed for that purpose and (3) if you let a mouse free to roam around your house, whether they are pets or pests, you will definitely put yourself into the same trouble.

All the best,
Sergiu Zburatoru

Pest Mice Considerations

What Animal Rights Groups Have to Say About Exterminating Mice?

Someone who concedes that mice are indeed pests and then say that the animal rights of these rodents should still be considered might sound like a hypocrite to most people. However, many animal rights activists are actually very vocal about their concern about how pest mice are being eradicated these days. They have complains about the kinds of devices and methods employed to control mice infestation. Nonetheless, don't think that their efforts are futile because after years of lobbying, they are able to slowly condition the minds of many people to be more humane to mice.

Attacks on Glue Traps

Glue traps have become very popular amongst many homeowners since the late 1990s because of how easy these traps can be used. Many homeowners are delighted about the fact that they don't have to worry much about the proper placement of mechanical traps that have triggers before they snap. Glue traps can be positioned anyway the user wants and still, there is a very big chance that the trap would catch mice. The popularity of glue traps even rose higher when manufacturers started to make the glue smell and taste like bait food. With this innovation, users no longer need to put bait food around the trap because mice are lured into the trap by the glue itself.

However, the dark side about glue traps which many animal right advocates complain about is the way it kills mice. It has been a long-standing practice of many glue trap users to just let mice die out of starvation and dehydration after they are caught by the glue. In some instances, mice even decapitate themselves just to be free from the glue, without realizing that this act would still lead to their own demise – bleeding to death.

It has been the resounding battle cry of many animal right activists to change the way people look at mice. For them, since mice are indeed pests, it is not wrong to hunt them down and kill them. What's wrong is when you prolong the suffering of an animal although you could have done something to end their suffering as soon as possible.

Through their efforts many homeowners who use glue traps are not encouraged to be more humane to mice. Even the manufacturers of these glue traps include in their packaging instructions that aims to teach the user how to dispose of the mice right after they are caught.

Problems with Rodenticides

Many animal right advocates are against the use of Rodenticides primarily because it can also harm the other pets that live in the same house where the poison is placed. There have been so many instances when dogs and cats "accidentally" lick or eat the food bait mixed with Rodenticides and many animal rights advocates do not wish to expose these pets to such kind of risk. However, a portion of these advocates detests the use of Rodenticides because of how it kills the rodents.

Anticoagulant Rodenticides for example, kill mice by inhibiting their bodies to produce white blood cells. Without white blood cells, these animals will not be able to heal by themselves and their wounds will never close, killing the mice by draining it of its blood. Anticoagulant Rodenticides are also mixed with corroding agents that can wound the internal organs of the mouse (primarily the stomach) leading to severe internal bleeding. Many animal rights advocates believe that the use of such kinds of Rodenticides brutally kills the rodent because they have to be given in multiple dosages in order to entice mouse to nibble it every now and then. Animal rights advocates believe that the more humane way to kill mice is to poison them with something that would kill them instantly without causing them so much pain.

A Better Idea

For animal rights advocates who believe that mice still deserve to be treated humanely although they are to be rid of are vocal about their appreciation of the electric traps. The idea of mice electrocution has been around since the late '80s but it has become a hit in the market only recently. Animal rights advocates find electrocution as more humane that the other methods used to kill mice because mice do not necessarily suffer for a long period of time before they die. In a split of a second, a mouse can die inside an electrocution mouse trap.

Moreover, animal right advocates also think that the use of non-invasive methods to scare mice away are always more better. Using catnip or peppermint oil for example, does not kill mice, but they are sufficient to send mice away and keep them out of your property.

Case Study: Why is there a need to be humane to mice?

It might be difficult to digest why there is a need to be "kind" to pests like mice since they are the ones causing the trouble. However, for animal rights advocates, animals, whether pests or not, do not have to suffer before they die. For example, pigs, cows and chickens do not have to be tortured before they are slaughtered because it is no longer necessary. In fact, the Bureau of Food and Drugs has released a guideline as to how these animals should be killed in order to reduce their sufferings.

The same idea is also true with animal duelling. Many animal rights advocates have exhausted so much effort in putting an end to bull and horse wrestling. In some places around the world, humans use these animals as "actors" in an entertainment arena where they gamble and enjoy the sight of animals killing each other to death. The efforts of animal rights organizations like PETA have been fruitful over the years and many states and countries have not banned the use of animals in "blood sport entertainments".

Now, it might be difficult to see the relationship of plain pest mice to the lives of the other poor animals dying brutally in the hands of man, however, for animal rights advocates the relationship is clear and simple: these rodents have lives too and they can feel pain too. While it is not easy for a non-animal lover to understand why some people are so concerned about the "feelings" of animals, for animal-lovers and for animal rights advocates, their mission is to make sure that animals are well protected and in the event that they have to die to benefit mankind, they have to die humanely. In the end, it is their utmost believe that the best way to make sure that society will no longer go back to its once barbaric state, it has to do away with violence, which of course includes inhumane animal slaughter (that includes mice).

All the best,
Sergiu Zburatoru

Pest Mice and Plague (Part II)

The Black Death (part II): A Historical Account Of the Pest's Virulence

Disappearance of the Black Death

It wasn't until the later part of 1530's that the plague began to dissipate in Europe. The last strike of the plague in England was around 1665 and in Western Europe, the last traces were sometime 1722, about almost a century later. The gradual disappearance of The Black Death has spawned many theories and hypothesis as to what caused the exodus. One of the most argued and heated theories was that the black rats whom have been believed to be the primary carrier of the plague has been naturally replaced by brown rats that doesn't carry the plague infection. Whether due to migration of species or just the natural balance of things they can't figure out what exactly it was that lead to the replacement. Another theory suggests that the long term exposure among rodents to the disease made them develop an immunity system against the disease, thus, making them unviable for the disease's communication or probably the disease itself has undergone evolutionary changes that it became less fatal and eventually broke the centuries of contagion cycle. Amongst the theories that were formulated to explain the departure of the plague that garnered most approval from scientists at present was the concept of human intervention. Even though it wasn't until the early 19th century that doctors have found out how the bacteria and viruses in germs could lead to the disease, the fact along that Europeans were able to discover already in the 16th century that the plague's contagiousness and its parasitic characteristics, moving from one place to another probably dawned the beginning of the end of the plague.

Up to present times, scientists are still studying some areas around Europe were there was an account of historical concentration of the plague to uncover clues and certain evidences that would support any of the theories and finally find the ultimate answer as to what caused the plague at the first place and how it ended. However, conclusions are still remotely perceivable and angles of possible causes are still in consideration. Another debacle of the scientists that are onto finding the truth about the Black Death is the fact that the disease has indeed evolved to different forms over the years, making its origins remotely traceable. It is now hard to identify the characteristics of the disease's former state during the plague.

Effects of the Plague

Numerous consequences followed after the passing of The Black Death and all the other epidemics of the bubonic plague. One of the most horrendous accounts of the aftermaths of the plague was the series of horrifying vicious attacks on the Jews, outsiders and lepers whom were accused of deliberately imbuing poison into the air and water that caused the pestilence. The assaults have originated from the south of France, but were increasingly dramatic in the parts of Germany and Switzerland –the areas that have rich historical accounts of Jewish discrimination and attacks on their community. There were massacres even in Bern as a natural scenario that followed after. For weeks of formidable tension, Jews were wounded up together and burned or drowned in the marshes. There were also accounts of attacks on Jews even if there were no plagues. Slaughtering them was an accepted scenario as most of the other communities hated the Jews, in their conviction that they were the ones that caused the plague. The Pope, the highest leader of the Catholic Church deplored and condemned these killings that took place all around the Europe and had put forth efforts in discouraging the people from doing the heinous deeds. However, the face of mass's fury, these efforts were proven futile and the Jew killings continued on until the plague's manifestations have totally lifted up. That was the only time when the persecutions ended. There were accounts of persecution that took place after the plague, but confrontations were not with violence as it was during 1348 and 1351.

Contemporary Writers and Chroniclers have often labeled the plague as "a horrible and cruel thing".  Town during the time after the plague seemed to have been desolated and deserted.  The overall population of Europe was reduced drastically up to 50 percent or even more. In places like Bremen and Germany, casualties have reached to 7,000 to 12,000 inhabitants. Florence suffered even more casualties of the plague; deaths ranging from 40,000 to 90,000 of its inhabitants were wiped out during after the plague. Near Siena, two-thirds of the population in the urban areas were annihilated. 50,000 to 180,000 were recorded dead due to the plague in Paris, the largest city in the Northern Alps. Major cities in Europe were compelled to dig mass graves to dispose and burry the multitude of cadavers after the plague. There were even cases that an entire village's population, particular the smaller scale places, was annihilated due to the plague. And some time, villages have disappeared altogether. Larger towns were economically maimed due to drastic reduction of manpower, having their workforce and merchants either fled or died from the plague. The recovery of the population would have been easily done, however the newer epidemics that came after that plague prevented the reinstatement. European high populations were not reinstated only until last decades of the 1400's.

Economic changes can be evidently recognized after the plague as wealth became more concentrated on certain strata of the society. The deaths of thousands of people have lead to the unequal distribution of resources, leaving the survivors as benefactors of the resources left by the departed. Moreover, workers that have survived the plague were paid 5 times more for handling more than one person's job, having all other workers die from the plague, landlords and business owners are compelled to compensate more. The corresponding rise in per capita was inevitable and natural considering the deaths of many people. The drop in population has resulted to the natural economic affluence of the place. Extravagant spending in the different towns that followed were well documented. Merchants and landlords however, are getting poor by having to compensate more than regular and getting less return of investment.

The plague brought a few changes to religion and to medicine. Devotees continued to visit shrines as they normally do before and during the plague, still praying for the saints like St. Roch to protect them from any other plagues that might come. Pilgrimages to shrines were even made more popular. Other saints like St. Roch were even depicted in portraits of them protecting individuals from pestilence of anything depictive and symbolical of that sort. Although, many Europeans complained of the little help contributed by the contemporary physicians, old practices of alternative medicine and traditional medical practices were still being patronized. It remained unchanged even until the time when cholera struck up to 1830s.

Editor's Remarks

This article is largely educational in nature. In the light of knowing more about the pests and their effects of inhabiting the household, it would be wise to grasp some outsource knowledge regarding their nature, in the hope that having been able to know more about them would enable you to defend yourself from them and the harms they provide. Pest mice control is a mean towards an end. But such mean would require you to have sufficient knowledge first in what you are dealing with. I hope you will find this article both educational and motivating.

All the best,
Sergiu Zburatoru
mice control mice extermination