When setting up the mice trap for the first time, I couldn’t decide what to put on it. Like any regular folk who didn’t have any prior experience catching and trapping mice, I thought cheese was the only bait to put on the trap. However, after delving into the subject and asking professionals, I found out there were several food items you can use as bait.
So, what to put on mice traps for effectively getting rid of those tiny little critters? From sticky and non-sticky sweet stuff to various protein-rich foods, seeds, and nuts, you can use a range of food already present in your pantry. You don’t have to buy them separately as baits for mice traps. You can even use your pet’s food to lure mice into traps.
What is the regular pantry stuff that you can put on the trap and how to do it effectively? Keep reading this piece to find out. We will also discuss some tips on using baits and the mistakes to avoid while setting up a mice trap.
Let’s look at all the sweet and salty stuff that you can put on a mouse trap.
Mice love proteins in the form of meat. So, whatever meat option is available in the house, you can put it on the trap. Mice love to nibble on a piece of bacon. You can use bits of hot dog or beef jerky as well. Keep in mind that you don’t have to put a large chunk of bacon/hot dog on the bait tray. The large size of the bacon doesn’t guarantee that mice will be trapped.
Mice have a strong sense of smell. They can detect even the morsels of bacon or any cooked meat in their vicinity. So, use leftover pieces of bacon and a hot dog in mice traps instead of slicing the uneaten ones. And even if there is no bacon, jerky, or dog in your pantry, use whichever type of meat you are cooking for yourself.
Sticky Sweet Stuff
Jam, syrup, honey— you can put any of those sticky sweet breakfast items on the mice trap. Again, all these items or some are available in every household, and you don’t have to buy anything in the name of “mouse trap bait.” There are multiple reasons why I advocate putting “sticky” sweet stuff on mouse traps.
- Sticky sweet stuff gives off a strong aroma that mice easily pick up from afar.
- Mice can’t get away after nibbling the edges of thick, viscous fluids like honey, jam, or maple syrup. They have to put in extra effort to eat the sticky sweet stuff, which means they have to enter the trap completely.
- The stickiness of the bait also gets to the mice’s skin when they try to eat it. The sticky bait makes it difficult for them to get out of the tray. The mice get trapped despite having quick reflexes.
While using honey, jam, or any other sticky stuff on the trap, keep in mind that it won’t come off easily when it stays on the bait tray overnight. You have to thoroughly clean the trap to use it the second time.
Chocolate, Candies, and Other Hard Sweet Stuff
Chocolate, candies, and jelly beans are great for luring mice to a certain place. However, putting them on a trap might not be a good idea, especially if you use a snap trap. These hard sweet items can easily separate and roll off from the bait tray, and mice can devour it without facing any consequences.
These hard sweets can be a good option for cage traps and other large humane traps. Here, the bait will stay inside the trap even if it is constantly being moved and knocked.
Cartoons and movies show cheese as the favorite food of mice for a reason. Mice love the pungent smell of cheese; they also love to munch on it due to its sweet and salty profile. However, you need to pick different types of cheeses for different traps. For instance, if you are using a regular snap trap, go with a chunk of cheddar cheese. You can also use cream cheese if you are using a humane trap.
A dollop of cream cheese in a human trap can produce a strong olfactory (smell) signal for nearby mice. A mouse also needs more time to feast on cream cheese because they can’t just grab it and run. This condition increases the chances of your trapping efforts to become fruitful.
Dog and cat food is rich in protein and also gives off a strong smell. These characteristics make it a good option to put on mice traps. Between dry and wet pet food, the latter is the better option for mice traps because its viscous nature sticks it better on the bait tray and requires more effort from mice to pick and nibble on it.
Peanut butter is another suitable pantry item to put on a mice trap. I find it an effective bait to catch mice for various reasons. Its consistency is perfect for putting with mice traps. It doesn’t come off easily, and mice can’t swig it quickly. Secondly, it has a strong nutty smell that makes nearby mice curious and drives them to look for the source of that heavenly smell.
Seeds and Nuts
Mice love to nibble on seeds and nuts during summer. Pumpkin and sunflower seeds are their favorite. Similarly, they like to gnaw peanuts, almonds, and all the other nuts they can get their hands (or limbs) on. However, the problem with seeds and nuts is that you may not succeed in using them with regular snap traps.
Seed and nuts are hard and dry, and they can easily roll off the bait tray. They are more suitable for cage traps where they remain inside the cage, irrespective of how much it is subjected to knocking and dragging.
Tips to Effectively Make a Mouse Trap
Try to take these things into account while setting up a mice trap. These tips will ensure you can get rid of more mice while putting in the least effort.
Wear Gloves While Putting Bait on Mice Trap
Mice have a strong sense of smell, and they can easily pick the human scent on a portion of food if you have picked and put it with bare hands. For them, the human scent is a sign of danger, so they are most likely to stay away from the bait you have handled with bare hands.
Don’t Go Overboard with the Quantity of Bait
Using a large quantity of bait can prove to be counterproductive. When you use a large piece of bacon or cheese or a bigger dollop of honey on the trap, it gets easier for mice to pick some of it and get away without being caught. Mice’s sharp noses can easily pick up their favorite food in the smallest of quantities.
Patience Is the Key
If you expect to catch all the mice in the house overnight, you will be disappointed. You need to exhibit patience to get rid of those pesky critters. You may have to try different food on the bait tray because all mice are not fans of the same food. Also, you should first set up traps with baits on them without activating them. This way, you can ease mice into trusting the trap a second time.
We hope that the above discussion answers your query of “what to put on mice trap.” Using the combination of baits and the trapping tips we have discussed here, you may succeed in taking care of your mice problem without spending money on professional pest extermination and control.
How to Know If You Have Mice Problem?
You can find out about mice infestation in your house by looking for various signs of their presence.
- Nibbled holes in insulations, stacked papers and cardboards, and dry stored food
- Tiny hairs and droppings
- Food crumbs in unusual places
- Runways and narrow traces on dusty floor surfaces
- A musty and stale odor
Where to Place Mice Traps in the House?
You have to put mice traps in all those areas where you have identified the signs of rodent activity mentioned above. Mice move around the house while creeping right next to walls. So, set up traps in parallel to walls on their paths.
Can One Use More than One Bait at Once?
Yes, you can use multiple baits in a single mice trap. Different smells coming from the same location can push mice to find out the source and get their treat.