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A Better Mousetrap

A Better MousetrapOK. I took some pictures of my mousetrap. I'd also like to clarify a few things -- I didn't come up with this idea on my own. I first stumbled across it on the Internet a while ago, and then several months ago I'm pretty sure I read about theevilhalf using a similar method to catch mice. When I was talking to my parents about this the other night, my dad said that my grandfather used to use a similar method to catch mice in the warehouse. Once I decided I had an elusive mouse this time, I hit the search engines again and found several variations on this design. I decided on using the design that involved a soup can. Another popular variation involves an unstable plank. Hitting the search engines with terms like "bucket mousetrap" brings up lots of hits, including the design I used as a basis for mine and a YouTube video of a similar trap in action.

I whipped up my trap in about 15 minutes last night. Here's what I did:

  1. Puncture each end of a soup can, drain the soup.
  2. Thread a coat hanger through the soup can.
  3. Attach the coat hanger to the bucket, adjusting length of coat hanger as necessary. I bent the hanger so that the top of the soup can is a little lower than the lip of the bucket.
  4. Put enough water in the bucket to drown a mouse.
  5. Coat the can with a strip of peanut butter. (The instructions I found said to use bacon, but bacon is too precious to feed to mice.)
  6. Place the bucket in the basement and build a ramp to the lip of the bucket. Put some peanut butter on the end of the ramp.
  7. Go away.
  8. Come back later to find a mouse.
Disposing of everything simply involved dumping the bucket. I set up the trap again, in case there are more mice to be caught.

The can situated over the water in the bucket:

Close-up of the coat hanger on the bucket (outside):

Close-up of the coat hanger on the bucket (inside):

The captured mouse:



( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 6th, 2008 09:48 pm (UTC)
I was skeptical, but the proof is in the .. er .. bucket. This is an excellent way to catch varmints.
Dec. 7th, 2008 12:23 am (UTC)
aw :( you could've let it go.
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:09 am (UTC)
Until I find the way they're getting inside, I don't want repeat visitors.
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:43 am (UTC)
isn't there a forest or something you could've driven it out to?
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:51 am (UTC)
OK, you've got me there. I guess I could have taken it down to the park.
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:52 am (UTC)
see??? empty bucket of water, catch more mice, take them to the park where they can live happy, productive lives outside of your house.

everyone wins.

Edited at 2008-12-07 01:52 am (UTC)
(Deleted comment)
Dec. 7th, 2008 07:07 am (UTC)
Dec. 7th, 2008 03:02 am (UTC)
Except that they tend to carry disease and will no doubt find their way into another house/apartment/etc in the future. I believe in being kind to animals, but not at the risk of public health.

I think this is an efficient method, but I'm not sure it's the most humane. Drowning is ... not pleasant. But none of the ways we have to rid ourselves of vermin are particularly humane. Traps miss and maim/mangle instead of kill, poison is painful, glue traps are kind of a joke. I dunno. Tough situation.

How do you dispose of the bodies? Just dumping them isn't much more sanitary than letting them live around your house, really...
Dec. 7th, 2008 03:41 am (UTC)
I'm disposing of the bodies in unused areas of the backyard. If the body count continues to rise, I'll start disposing of them in the trash can.
Dec. 7th, 2008 03:47 am (UTC)
Curiosity more than anything. Also, the first half of the comment was meant to be in reply to another comment -- but I kind of fail at navigating my mouse tonight. ::hangs head in shame::

Edited at 2008-12-07 03:47 am (UTC)
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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