I spent the weekend staying with a friend in London. As I climbed the stairs to her flat in now-fashionable part of East London I noticed a number of mouse traps. “That’s to catch Mickey,” she replied. She opened the door and another mouse trap was placed along the skirting in the hall next to the kitchen. ‘It gets worse’ she said as she opened a cupboard door. I peeked inside. Amongst mouse droppings and mugs lay another mouse trap.
The cupboard had a hole in it at the back. Electrical wires and the wall were exposed. Mice were using the electric cables as a rope ladder to their food source, but more worryingly mice can nibble electric cable and cause a fire as this video shows.
“Last night I heard screaming from the flat below so I think they’ve got a mouse problem too. And I’ve seen pest control outside the pub next door too,” she said.
Mice are opportunists. Give them a way in and they will take in. Other than the electrical cable rodent rope-ladder, each door had an inch gap at the bottom. Mice can squeeze under a 6mm gap – if you can get a pencil through a hole, a mouse can easily gain access. Mice are perfectly capable of climbing two flights of stairs, or more. There were so many access routes into the Victorian block of flats that if the problem wasn’t nipped in the bud a massive infestation could quickly take hold.
To make matters worse many flats dwellers in London don’t have wheelie bins in which to seal their rubbish. In my friend’s case the only place to store rubbish was in a garage or leave it festering in the kitchen for two weeks until the next collection.
She has sealed all her boxed food in tough plastic containers and with the strategically placed traps, hopefully the mouse problem will soon be solved.