Hazards of Being a Mouse

Before washing the bedroom windows, I moved the garden tool rack and a bunch of clutter away… only to find a remarkable amount of litter below the plastic base:

Litter under garden tool rack

Litter under garden tool rack

One of those lumps consisted of tightly packed fluff, much like the mouse nest inside the barbie a few years ago, so this was surely a winter home.

But it seems at least one mouse didn’t make it through the winter:

Dessicated mouse under tool rack

Dessicated mouse under tool rack

Given its dessicated nature, I think the poor critter probably expired during the depths of the winter freeze.

  1. #1 by madbodger on 2013-06-02 - 09:18

    I had a similar experience. I was cleaning out the basement lab in preparation for moving, and decided to strip an old printer for parts. However, said printer was full of fluff and droppings – apparently a mouse had made it a home. And, within the fluff was a mummified mouse. I didn’t salvage much from that printer.

    • #2 by Ed on 2013-06-02 - 10:51

      I didn’t salvage much from that printer.

      Know when to fold ’em…

  2. #3 by Red County Pete on 2013-06-02 - 11:04

    Yeah, I get mice in odd places. Both trucks have hardware cloth screens (1/4″ mesh) in the airboxes to prevent fresh nests, and we now keep the hoods open when the vehicles are in the garage.

    My “large item” safe has a hole(now plugged) for a Goldenrod dehumidifier/heater. Mama mouse set up shop, but investigated a 5 gallon bucket and got stuck, so I had to deal with the mostly dead mouslings in the safe. I’ve found nests with pellets of D-con mouse bait in the barn. Lost a few rolled-up rugs that way.

    My current problem is carpenter ants in the greenhouse. They won’t eat the wood, and they’ll leave the plants alone, but their bite is annoying, so I have to look into veggie-safe control. (Boric acid baits look attractive, so far.) I had two 10 gallon pots stacked for the winter on a bed, and when separated, found the makings of a primary nest, complete with pupae for queens and males. Evicted same.

    • #4 by Ed on 2013-06-02 - 14:14

      we now keep the hoods open

      Ah, so the dawgs can get all comfy atop those nice warm engines during the winter… [grin]

      • #5 by Red County Pete on 2013-06-03 - 00:57

        Nah, they’re smarter than that. [grin] In the months associated with Winter (approximately Sept through mid June*), if the faux-woodstove (really propane) is on, they’ll be found with a paw or head on the hearth. Trucks are only interesting if they have to go to the vet (who they love–go figure), or if chipmunks take shelter in the undercarriage.

        * Stealing a joke about Michigan: We have 4 seasons: Almost-Winter, Winter, Still-Winter, and Construction (or Fire, depending on the year). I just turned the pilot off the FWS yesterday. It got used the day before. Guess I need to switch the ceiling fan to the short-season direction.

        Besides, it’s cats that nap on engines, or hoods :-)

  3. #6 by Frans on 2013-06-02 - 15:27

    I once had a less disturbing-looking find. A kind of round bowl in the garage had a mouse skeleton in it. It wasn’t even half as creepy as a dried-out frog or mouse. (If you want to see pictures of the frog, just ask. ;P)

    • #7 by Ed on 2013-06-02 - 17:07

      want to see pictures of the frog

      No, that’s OK. Really, I’m fine with not knowing more…

  4. #8 by jim oslislo on 2013-06-03 - 07:55

    I have a late 70’s Husqvarna dirt bike in my garage that hasn’t been run in decades, but I can’t seem to bear parting with. I took the air cleaner cover off years ago to discover a mouse had used it for it’s home. Surprisingly, the mouse had almost complete eaten the foam air cleaner element which had been soaked in two-stroke oil! Who knows? We put oil on our salad, right?

    • #9 by Ed on 2013-06-03 - 09:03

      We put oil on our salad, right?

      Carbohydrates, hydrocarbons, they’re all tasty!

      As nearly as I can tell, mice will at least nibble on anything, perhaps to discover if it’s edible or nest-able. Most things are, alas…