Pest companies busy as mice look for warmth in local homes - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Pest companies busy as mice look for warmth in local homes

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(Image Courtesy: MGN Online / Pixaby) (Image Courtesy: MGN Online / Pixaby)

Record low temperatures are not just keeping humans inside, but rodents too.

Pest control companies told Western Mass News that calls are increasing right now from concerned homeowners.

Each year, from fall to the beginning of winter, the different sorts of mice we see in western Massachusetts are looking for a place to call home.

"One thing to know, with any homeowner, you cannot fully rodent-proof a home.  They can get in, a quarter of an inch.  That's your pinky." said Jacklyn Larder with Minuteman Pest Control in Northampton.

According to Larder, it doesn’t take much for a tiny problem to become a big one.

"Never let something progress to the point where it's out of their control, because their reproduction rate can make things escalate," Larder noted.

Larder tells Western Mass News within 90 days, a family of six mice can multiply into 50 or 60.

"It's never one. They don't operate that way and essentially where one goes, the others will follow," Larder explained.

Things to look for are fairly simple, Larder said.

"What I usually advise to customers is to pull those drawers out, take a look back there. You may not know, but there could be a trail of droppings.  Be aware of any exterior doors. You don't want to leave any gaps.  They could also look in the unfinished areas in their basement." Larder said.

It's not just what your eyes can spot.  Larder said that says if you hear a scratching sound on your wall, it could mean that you have a problem as well, but there are a few things that you can do.

"The littlest effort goes the longest way," Larder noted.

Things like natural repellants.

"Things like balsam fur, balsam fur packs. They can place that around the vehicle or in problem areas.  Corner boards, if they have any small holes or openings you can use grade three or four steel wool. That's something that they can't penetrate through." Larder said.

If these things don’t work, Larder said that that’s when you need to get in touch with the pros.

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