It’s often that I get calls about rodents scratching in the walls and attic at night.  These scurrying creatures keep home owners awake at night with their noise and the worry that they cause.  Mice and rats may be building a nest, gathering food from your pantry or kitchen, or any number of other nefarious activities.  But if we see them during the day, and hear them at night, then when do mice sleep?  The sleep pattern of mice depends upon the environment.  

Mice will be most active when there is the least danger.  Often this translates in the wild to being most active at dusk and dawn.  This is because, during the day and night there are plenty of predators after mice.  Predators such as owls, hawks, cats, dogs, skunks and snakes all prey upon mice at different times of the day.  Owls and skunks are more nocturnal predators while hawks and snakes all hunt during the day.  Calling a Tulsa exterminator can help.  


Mice will build nests for themselves and their young.  They usually will find softer materials such as leaves, insulation, cloth, etc.  to make a soft nest.  They keep small territories and usually will only go around ten to thirteen feet away from their nest to forage for food.  Nesting spots are usually someplace very well protected.  This means that in your home, they will probably find a place in your attic, crawlspace or inside a wall.  

Mice are found on every continent and in pretty much every environment.  In the wild, mice will often burrow underground.  This is one of the safest places that they can find.  But often, they will use a hollowed out tree or an old nest left by a squirrel or bird.  Protected from outside interference, they will then chew things to provide materials for nests.  After a suitable nest is built, they will start producing and raising their young.  


Typically, mice do not hibernate in the winter.  They also are known to build up a cache of nuts especially in the fall to prepare for the winter months.  In severe weather, they will become dormant to conserve heat.  They usually will stay together as a family during the winter months and share food and nest sites.   

Mice typically do not reproduce in the winter.  This is due to the stresses of cold and lack of food sources.  They will usually not stray far from their food cache.  When the warm weather extends later into the year, then they will also extend their reproductive season.  Often mice wintering in homes will continue reproducing through the winter because they have heat and food in plenty.  


The underground burrows of mice are usually quite complex.  They consist of multiple tunnels, several chambers for nesting and storage, and three to four exits.  House mice are fast runners (up to 8 miles per hour), good climbers and jumpers, and also swim well.  Despite being so prolific at running and swimming, they rarely go more than 50 feet from their nests.  

Even though mice live together in family units or colonies, they are still very territorial.  Males can be quite aggressive in this manner.  Mice are polymerous, or mate with multiple partners.  Dominant males will nest with several females and their young.  They will set up a territory and defend it against other males.  Females also have a loose hierarchy, but are no where as aggressive as males.  Adult mice will use their aggression to force their young out when they are grown.  


Mice find themselves at the bottom of the food chain.  They are omnivores that feed predominantly on fruits and grains.  But there are plenty of predators that feed on them.  Owls and skunks are nocturnal predators.  Barn owls are particularly adept at hunting mice.  A family of barn owls can consume up to a dozen mice in one night.  Daytime predators include cats, hawks, foxes and snakes.  Also, a good Oklahoma pest control company can catch a few as well!

In order to protect themselves, mice have become extremely fast.  If a predator misses when hunting, it is seldom that they get a second attempt.  Mice also reproduce very quickly.  So even if they are under heavy predation, their numbers will bounce back fairly quickly.  Mice can even shed their tail if it’s caught by a predator.  These small creatures can sense temperature changes and changes in the ground surface with their whiskers.  They hear well, smell well, feel well with their whiskers, but their vision is weak.  This is why they often travel along walls.  


Mice are not hard to spot if you have them.  Of course, if you see one scurrying along a wall, you know that you have a problem.  If you see food bags or dog food in your pantry that has been chewed open, then this also is a sign.  Another tell tale sign is when you see droppings.  If you have any of these situations, than it may be time to call an Oklahoma exterminator.  Your local Tulsa pest control company will have affordable solutions to eliminate any issues that you may have.  Feel free to contact us here at TermMax Pest Control for all your pest control needs.  We are here to help!

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