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Of mice and men -- and how to greenly get rid of the mice

By Berit Griffin November 1, 2011

Help this blogger out!

Last night, I had an unexpected visitor of the rodent variety. Unbeknownst to me, a mouse was running around my dining room floor, scurrying into the kitchen upon being noticed. After taking a moment to compose myself, I decided to figure out how to deal with this problem — sadly not uncommon in older apartments and houses, especially as the weather gets colder.

Although I want to rid myself of my mousy friend, I’d rather try some green repellent solutions first before resorting to poison and traps and dealing with mouse corpses.

I started by scrubbing the kitchen down (you could eat off my floor now!) and throwing out my store of paper and plastic bags — less places for the little critter to hide.

Today, after some Internet research, I purchased some Fresh Cab, the only EPA-approved botanical rodent solution (it smells like a Christmas tree!), as well as some devices you plug in that emit a high-pitched noise mice hate (humans can’t hear it).

I’ve also heard a lot about using peppermint essential oil as a mouse repellent; apparently mice can’t stand the smell, but it’s pleasant to people. There are recommendations of using peppermint to keep the rodents away, either by soaking cotton balls in the oil and placing it around your home, or mixing up a solution in a spray bottle of water and peppermint oil and spraying it wherever mice might be.

I hope my mouse will disappear (and my home will smell pleasantly minty), but what else should I be doing? What are some other green tips to drive the mice away without having to trap and dispose of them? Should I replace my lidless trash can under the sink with a lidded one? Does Borax work as a mouse repellent? Would anyone like to lend me a cat or a barn owl? Leave a suggestion in the comments!

Image courtesy of Brian_Kellet on Flickr