If you’ve ever had a rodent infestation, you know how clever those little guys can be. There’s a reason why humanity has struggled to eradicate these creatures for centuries, while never achieving any long-term success. If they weren’t so resilient and smart, they would never be a problem in the first place. So don’t beat yourself up if you check your mousetraps every morning, and find that your rodents have taken the bait without leaving a trace. They can and will make a fool out of you from time to time.
Part of the reason why they’re so hard to trap sometimes, is due to our own lack of imagination. We’re quick to use those classic spring-loaded mousetraps, even though they don’t always work. At least, not in the long run.
The thing about rodents that some folks don’t realize, is that they will eventually learn to avoid your traps. If they smell one of their dead comrades, they will leave that area. And if you touch the traps with your bare hands, they will avoid it for smelling like a human. Heck, they might even avoid it just because they’ve never seen it before. They’re very sensitive to changes in their environment.
My face, every time a mouse calls my peanut butter bluff.
So it’s important to have more than one trick up your sleeve. And if you aren’t comfortable with leaving poison all over your house, then you’re going to have to learn as many rodent trapping methods as you can. It’s a good idea to try different techniques once they start adapting to the old ones.
Among the most effective, is the bucket trap. It involves nothing more than a 5 gallon bucket, some wire, a tin can, and a long piece of wood. You drill holes into the bucket and the tin can, and run the wire throughout. The can will be suspended over the bucket, and you use the wood to create a ramp. Then you bait the can with something like peanut butter. When the mice try to reach the peanut butter, the can spins and dumps them into the bucket.
If you’re more of a visual learner, check out the video below.
What I like most about this trap, is that it can capture more than one mouse with every attempt. They just fall for it every time. It also gives you the option to keep them alive. Even if you aren’t squeamish about killing them, it’s still a good idea to capture them alive and dump them in the wild.
Since rodents can smell it when one of their buddy’s have died, after a while they will learn to avoid certain traps. But if that scent isn’t there, they’ll never figure it out. They just sense the urine trails that the previous mouse left behind, and assume that the area is safe. So if possible, use a live trap like the one in the video, and dispose of them away from your property. That way, you’ll catch more of them in the long run.
So hopefully this method will give you an edge in your personal war against the rodent. Even though they’re pretty good at foiling our traps, you can still give them a run for their money with a 5 gallon bucket.
Joshua Krause was born and raised in the Bay Area. He is a writer and researcher focused on principles of self-sufficiency and liberty at Ready Nutrition. You can follow Joshua’s work at our Facebook page or on his personal Twitter.
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