3 steps to mouse baiting success


August 5, 2016


Photo: ©istock.com/Eric Isselée

When using snap traps for house mice, the wisdom is the more, the merrier. That’s not the case for rodenticide baiting, though. Inundating a population of mice with bait stations is an inefficient way to approach the problem. Instead, efforts are better focused on these three steps:

  1. Identify the best sites. When selecting a site to place a bait station, many factors need to be considered. Begin with a careful inspection of an account to determine where mice are active. For example, a station placed in a corner where accumulations of droppings are discovered will be more effective than one placed along a suspected runway, or a location where no mouse activity has been observed. Mice prefer to stop in corners or other places that are protected from predators, which is why droppings often build up in corners and under or inside items — that’s where the mice are spending time. Placing bait stations where mice are most comfortable will increase the odds that they eat the bait.
  2. Ensure the bait is secure, eliminating the possibility of non-target exposure. Inside residences, curious children and pets could potentially encounter bait stations intended for mouse control. Current label directions require any bait that is accessible to non-targets be placed inside tamper-resistant stations. Many companies require technicians to use tamper-resistant stations in all circumstances to ensure that exposure doesn’t occur. The most effective placements are typically in areas that pose the least risk: behind appliances or furniture, in out-of-reach and out-of-sight places, or behind stored items.
  3. Follow up. Once a mouse population is controlled, rodenticide bait should be removed. This practice eliminates the potential for non-target exposure, and it reduces the potential for infestation of forgotten bait by secondary pests.

When used as part of a sensible integrated pest management (IPM) program incorporating traps, sanitation and exclusion, baits can be a great way to limit house mouse callbacks and keep clients happy.

Contributor Dr. Jim Fredericks, VP of technical and regulatory affairs for the National Pest Management Association, at jfredericks@pestworld.org.

About the Author

Dr. Jim Fredericks

You can reach Dr. Fredericks, BCE, executive director of the Professional Pest Management Alliance (PPMA), at jfredericks@pestworld.org

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