Choosy Mouse's Cousin - Smart Mouse

Remember Choosy Mouse? If not, you can read here for a refresher.  We were pretty sure that we killed Choosy Mouse.  In fact, I'm still sure that we did.  But what we didn't know was that before we went and offed Choosy Mouse, he sent out holiday cards using our return address and his family came a-calling for the holidays.

Enter Choosy Mouse's cousin, Smart Mouse.

Here's the thing about Smart Mouse - he couldn't care less about the tasty cheese and creamy peanut butter that we left out for him.  Or rather, he did care, but he was smart enough to know that he should avoid those traps. 

The "tap tap tap tap tap" that we heard above our heads for HOURS ON END every night was literally driving us crazy.  We weren't getting any sleep, one of us was usually sleeping in the spare bedroom and sometimes we'd both be driven out of the bedroom.  It was ridiculous.

Extra Value Meal

Once we realized that the initial traps we set were not going to work, I slathered some traps in a cheese and peanut combination (what mouse could resist that?) and DH went all the way up into the attic to place a trap in the area where we were always hearing the noises above our head.  Previously we had just been leaving the traps near the attic entrance.

One of the tunnels and the obvious damage to the insulation
Once up there, DH realize why the sounds were so loud in our room - the Smart Mouse (or perhaps the Choosy Mouse before him) had created an elaborate maze of tunnels running through our insulation.  When he ran through these tunnels, he was basically running on the drywall of our ceiling.  Furthermore, there were significant areas where the insulation had been moved or destroyed, probably used to build nests elsewhere in the attic.

So DH put some traps directly into the tunnels that he had created and that night we went to sleep hoping to hear the delightful "SNAP!" of a trap ending Smart Mouse's life.  (I can't believe that I ever felt bad for these mice - listen to me now!)

How could he avoid that trap!!?!?

But there was no snap.  He went back up a few days later and found some new tunnels to try.  Still no snap.

We were getting desperate at this point.  We were so on edge about the whole thing that sometimes Murphy would sigh too loudly from his crate and I would instantly be wide awake because I was sure that it was the mouse up in the attic.  Neither of were getting a full night's sleep at all, and it was so frustrating. One morning at 4:30 a.m. we were both wide awake so we just started having a conversation as if that were the most normal thing in the world.

Time to bring in the big guns.

So we went to Home Depot and purchased new mesh wiring to try to repair the screen over the attic ventilation window and some of the ultrasonic electronic pest repellent devices, since that was basically the only other thing we hadn't tried yet (short of poison, which we weren't really interested in using in our attic.)

DH spent hours in the attic this past weekend (when it was freezing, if you remember) and he replaced the screen in such a way that it looks like a professional did it. He also installed a couple of outlets up there so that we could plug in a light to leave running 24/7 (since mice are nocturnal, right?), and so that we could plug in the ultrasonic devices that would hopefully make our attic a living hell for the Smart Mouse.  What better way to defeat the Smart Mouse than with technology, right?

DH felt fairly certain that the mouse was still in the attic, and that hopefully the ultrasonic noise would drive him crazy and right into a trap.  I - on the hand - believed that the Smart Mouse was NOT in the attic anymore, since I couldn't imagine him hanging out up there all day while DH was rooting around in his insulation nests and tunnels.

This final phase happened on Sunday evening (and I rewarded DH for the hard and awful work that he did by treating him to Domino's pizza but who knows who really enjoyed the treat more) and now it's Friday.  So far, it seems like I was correct - the mouse does not appear to be in the attic anymore.  We have enjoyed multiple great nights of sleep without the sounds of racing and nesting above our heads.  And I'm hopeful that the mesh screen will prevent any future critters from getting in, and that our rodent problems are over and done for good.



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