How many films or cartoons have you watched where a sneaky mouse has been tempted by a delicious bit of cheese?
Hands up if you’ve ever encountered a mouse in your home and stuck a piece of cheese in a mouse trap only to find that all that happens is that the cheese goes untouched and turns mouldy and the little pest is nowhere to be seen?
This is because mice being tempted by cheese is an urban myth. Here’s why.
So where did the ‘mice love cheese’ myth come from?
It’s not really known why just about every cartoon mouse is depicted nibbling on a big block of cheese, but it’s thought that before refrigeration when items like meat were salted and locked away securely to keep them preserved and prevent pests from getting to them, cheese was the one of the only foods available to mice because it wasn’t locked away. So that’s what they ate, and so began the myth.
What the average mouse really thinks about cheese
Obviously we couldn’t ask them, but one thing we do know is that mice have really sensitive noses, and anything that smells too strong or pungent can actually be unpleasant for them. This is why they probably wouldn’t go for cheese unless it was their only option.
So what does attract mice?
Rather than a piece of cheese, mice are more likely to be tempted by foods that are high in protein and fat like peanut butter or bacon. Sweet things like chocolate, fruit, and sugar cubes are also on the list of things they find desirable, just don’t place a big chunk of your chosen delicacy on a trap because mice will be able to nibble at it without disturbing the trap. They are far more intelligent than we give them credit for!
As well as using food as bait for traps, using materials they can use for a nest is also a good plan. Things like feathers and straw will be appealing to mice as they are always on the lookout for cosy materials for their nests.
Got mice in your home?
If you have mice in your home, step away from the cheese! It probably won’t work as bait.
Here’s what you can try instead. Head over to Contego Home Shield for DIY pest control options that work fast.
Our Rat & Mouse Killer Ruby Grain is easy to use and very effective. It’s easily installed in our tamper resistant bait stations, and it can be used in all weather conditions so it’s a great choice if you have an external pest problem.
This bait smells sweet to attract mice but it tastes really bitter, so children and pets will be deterred from eating it.
Alternatively, our Mouse Box and Pasta Bait Killer Kit can do the job equally as well and it’s just as easy to use. Our technician will come and set up the kit for you and show you how to use and monitor it, as well as giving you tips on how to prevent pest problems in the future.
These are the strongest and most effective products that are available to homeowners, and the bait can be used indoors and around outdoor areas like garden sheds. Be aware though that if you’re using these products in and around your home, they must be used with a tamper resistant bait station and you should follow the instructions and legal guidelines on these products at all times.
The other thing to note is that poisonous bait will not kill mice instantly, sometimes it takes several days or more to control an infestation and in the case of serious infestations, more bait may be required.
Have a serious mouse infestation? Call us today for help and advice.