Friday, November 18, 2011

Fall Nuisance Invaders

It's that time of year again...not only are people wanting to stay out of the cold, but many insects and their relatives are often driven into homes for the same reason. Common fall invaders include boxelder bugs, crickets, Multicolored Asian Ladybird Beetles, millipedes and centipedes, and wolf spiders. Using some good IPM practices, you can minimize the trouble these nuisance pests cause. Providing good seals around your home (perimeter, doors, windows), putting out sticky traps, and vacuuming up insect invaders can be helpful.

For more tips about the types of insects and spiders that can be bothersome in the fall and how to manage them, visit the following resources:

Common Fall Pests
Flies in the Home (Cluster flies being common in the fall and winter)
Managing Centipedes and Millipedes
Multicolored Asian Ladybird Beetles
Nuisance Pests
Wolf Spiders in Nebraska

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Mouse Mystery revisited

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that there was a suspected mouse in my friend's car. After cleaning out the ripped up tissues from the glove box, throwing away the kleenex box that had been on the floor, and relocating everything else, we set up two snap traps in the glove box. We didn't want to actually bait them because we knew it would make a mess in the car. Besides, although bait certainly helps, it isn't absolutely required for catching mice.

However, after about a week with no luck (with the hopeful feeling that the mouse had left but the unsettled feeling that it had not, or was dead somewhere in the car), she found in the trunk area near the spare tire another selection of tissues that had been unkindly ripped to shreds by our mouse friend. Enough was enough! One night, my friend parked the car in the garage and baited the trap with peanut butter. That did it...we caught our little four footed furry fiend! But my friend was having nothing to do with disposing of it, and had her dad do it for her! He then reset the trap...just in case.

I told her that everything was probably fine now that the mouse had been caught, but agreed it was a good idea to continue our IPM monitoring with a newly set trap. And low and behold, I received a text this morning (a little over a week after the first capture) saying she caught another mouse! I was shocked...sure I can believe there is more than one mouse in a structure, but in a car? What are the chances? Maybe mice are just fond of Honda Fits. I do have to say this has been the most unusual (although very successful!) IPM experience I've ever had!

UPDATE: I just heard from my friend that the other mouse was caught in her garage; she had put the second trap there while the other remained in the glove box. This makes more sense! One in the car was enough, so at least she prevented a second occurrence!