Mouse Wars Commence

After nine years of blogging and 1,700+ posts I cannot recall anything that surprised me more than the response to my recent post about mice in my truck(s).  I got several Comments (I average about one comment per two or three posts, or about one-and-a-half per week).  Plus, I got several direct emails with advice and commiseration.

Let it be said that the Mouse War has begun in earnest.  There has to be a Peter Sellers joke in there somewhere.

The strategic approach includes three separate campaigns: discouraging mouse entrance, eradicating mouse presence, and expunging the olfactory aftermath.

As for the first point, that is discouraging mouse entry, two distinct tactics are involved.  The first is to create an odor inside the cab that mice find repulsive.  Problem is, the smells mice find repulsive, I do too.  I am not hypersensate but there are precious few odors I want to be bombarded with continually.  Good barbecue might be on that list, but I presume that would attract mice, not repel them.  Yes, dryer swatches, room fresheners, and a host of other odors might work but I would soon tire of the fragrance.

The second tactic involves installing a strobe/sonic rebuff, which I ordered and will install when I get a free minute.  My pal MikeM is a vintage car guy and stores a treasured vehicle in an out-building and swears by these devices.  We will know soon enough whether it works for me, too.

The second phase of the war is the eradication of the interlopers.  I’ve had mixed luck with traditional mouse traps, but find them to be too insensitive in general.  All too often I do not find a dead mouse, but I do find the trigger has been licked clean of the peanut butter bait, even after I modify them to have a hair-trigger.  At Mrs. Barn’s suggestion I put one of her RatZappers in each truck with resounding success.  In short order I had six electrocuted mice, and in the week since there has been no activity.  I am so pleased with them that despite the price I will order several for myself, one for each truck and one for each end of the studio.  I work in a barn, after all.

The final hurdle is the de-stinkification of the cab once a mouse has crawled somewhere inaccessible and died.  Based on the responses I am not the only one with this problem.

I will for the most part follow a line of passive resistance — when the weather is accommodating, I will leave the windows cracked a bit to air out, and until the stench of dead mouse is gone I will pack the cab with some of my homemade charcoal to soak up the smell.

Wish me luck pilgrims, wish me luck.