Tuesday, August 7, 2012

This Means War

I neglected to mention one of Hoop Lake’s more prolific wild creatures – mice!  That’s because until a few weeks ago I really hadn’t seen them.  Unfortunately, evidence of the mouse population has been found recently – inside our trailer.  Ewwwwhhhh!  I have the same agreement with mice that I’ve always had with spiders:  if they’re outside I leave them alone.  If they’re in my house, they’re dead.

We mentioned our mouse problem to our Area Managers, who assured us we weren’t the only ones.  He suggested that we put steel wool around the pipes (where the mice get in) and that we put moth balls under the trailer.  Apparently the mice don’t like the smell of moth balls.  My great-great uncle was a tailor, and his house always smelled like moth balls.  They do smell terrible.  Problem #1 – I haven’t been able to find them.  Problem #2 – we would have to smell them right along with the mice, and we don’t have the option of finding other accommodations.  Scratch the moth balls.
To the internet!  I found an article saying that mice don’t like the smell of Irish Spring soap (once again I agree with them) or dryer sheets.  I placed dryer sheets in the areas where we’ve trapped them, but they don’t seem to make much of a difference.  Apparently our mice like “April fresh.”  So our only defense at this time is the steel wool.

On the offense – we trapped several with the good old-fashioned Victor wooden traps with the metal springs.  That is, until the mice figured out how to lick off the peanut butter without springing the traps.  Off to the hardware store, where we bought two different styles of traps.  One, also made by Victor, is more humane – the mice go in to get the bait and then can’t get out.  Then we can release them – far  away.  So far this trap has caught zero mice.
The other, made by Ortho, looks like a set of sharp teeth, but the plate holding the bait is a lot more sensitive.  We have yet to have a mouse steal the bait from these traps.  Perhaps Ortho has really built the proverbial better mousetrap.

When we left the lake on Monday there had been no mice in the traps for two days.  However, the battle continues until we have successfully convinced the mice of Hoop Lake to find food and shelter elsewhere.  Wish us luck.

P.S. – the fire restrictions in the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest have been lifted. So while we’re not completely out of danger of wildfires, it looks like the hunters that will be coming to the forest in the very near future will be able to stay warm in their camps outside of the established campgrounds.

No comments:

Post a Comment