Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Found a better mousetrap

Regular readers should be aware that I’m always on the lookout for a better mousetrap.

This one looks pretty good.

Apparently you just leave a few lying around the garden – with some peanut butter or chocolate sauce spread on their pins.

Better Mousetrap

Better Mousetrap

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March 22, 2018 Posted by | Civilian | , | Leave a comment

I’ll just rest here for a minute – mousey

I clearly shouldn’t have referred to the lesser return of the Beast from the East as just the usual blast of cold air we get to enjoy from Russia at this time of year, as I did yesterday.

While it was cold yesterday, at least unlike today (Sunday), we weren’t getting hit by snow again.

And, the returning mouseys seem to think my house is a refuge for them, as they think they can come in and shelter.

I think this is the first time I’ve caught one trying to get in on consecutive days.

And this one looks as if it’s just having a little lie down and a rest before it carries on.

Ah, maybe not.

It’s out into the garden for you matey, and a handy snack for a passing fox cat later in the day.

Mouse Resting

Mouse Resting

Update

I wandered past the window shortly after asking mousey to leave, and spotted a now familiar face pop out from the undergrowth.

By the time I grabbed a camera and reached a spot I could grab a pic from… it had, of course, disappeared.

But remembering where mousey had landed after his last, short, flight, I tried another spot.

Success!

Probably a pic of mousey too – but only if I was taking pics with X-Rays.

Tortie Snacker

Tortie Snacker

Still no collar, which most of the cats I see in houses here are fitted with.

Still looks fat and healthy though, so not having problems – and there’s one similar example, with a collar, that has always looked like skin and bones compared to this one. Don’t worry, that one is just slim.

Sad to say, this one has the usual disease that most of the cats around here are afflicted with, and the slightest move towards them (or just move if too quick) has them disappear from sight in an instant.

Even throwing a tasty morsel in their general direction is more or less pointless, as the next time you see them a microsecond later is in the next garden, or across the road.

March 19, 2018 Posted by | photography | , , | 1 Comment

Double trap mousey signals end of mini Beast from the East

We just got to enjoy what might be referred to by some as a mini Beast from the East which arrived in the past week, but this one is really just a more usual blast of cold air from the east/Russia that we get at this time of year.

Hardy Scots are used to this, and it’s not unusual (in my memory at least) to find what appears to be a lovely sunny Easter Day can, in fact, be absolutely freezing when you get out into the cold air. I won’t forget the Easter holiday I went out to work on a car restoration job on that holiday morning – and had to give up by lunchtime as I couldn’t feel my fingers!

But this year, the early start seems to the return of mousey, trying to get back into my house via the back door.

Having remarked on the peace I’d had during the coldest weather, it seems the end of that break has been marked by the return of my little friend.

There was the little smiling face staring back at me this morning (technically yesterday morning, Saturday, when the catch happened).

Ah well, at least two traps stopped the invasion this time

Double Trap Mousey

Double Trap Mousey

March 18, 2018 Posted by | photography | , | Leave a comment

I think I need a bigger mousetrap

Things have been quiet over the cold weather, and while there was one mouse caught on its way indoors  during the winter, once the weather combined cold, wet, windy, frosty, and snowy together… the arrivals stopped.

While the system (of trapping just outside the door) seems to be completely effective, and it seems I can at last leave my back door open once again, I did have a quick look online for any new developments.

I think I’ll have to think about building something bigger, just to be sure.

They’re evolving!

I might keep this one 🙂

Mouse?

Mouse?

Russian genetic engineering?

Mouse

Mouse

No comment (but I will be getting a ‘humane’ trap).

Mouse

Mouse

March 11, 2018 Posted by | Civilian | , | Leave a comment

Bonus pic – The one that got away

Not entirely unexpected as these traps are really sensitive – banging on the same floor they are sitting on, if indoors, can set them off.

But I was still surprised to see the scene below this morning.

Mousey was actually still present on the other side, and beat it when I opened the trap.

This shows the problem, with a relatively huge gap under this outside door (fortunately on what might be described as porch or outhouse) which can’t be closed due to the shape of floor/ground.

A straight barrier was tried, for the door to close against, but after that had tried to kill a number of people on repeated occasions, as they tripped over this obstacle, it was removed.

I remember various hanging, flexible, seals that I saw fitted on badly fitting doors in Ye Goode Olde Days, but only got blank looks when I made enquiries.

The closest offered these days seems to be a spring-loaded brush strip that can be fitted along width of the bottom edge.

This would probably do the job – but the small matter that the biggest one on sale is less than half the height needed for this gap.

Still, inspired by this, I could maybe solve the problem with a pack of cheap paintbrushes from the Pound Shop, and just screw them to the bottom of the door.

You know… that joke doesn’t actually sound quite as silly as it did when it first occurred to me.

Mouse What Mouse?

Mouse What Mouse?

February 8, 2018 Posted by | photography | , | Leave a comment

They’re getting bigger

It may be my imagination, but I’m sure they’re getting bigger.

And it’s not as if I’m feeding them boxes of bait either, which I gave up as they just seemed to eat it faster if I put out more.

Guess the quiet spell is over, and the cold weather makes little difference to their invasion.

Still Bigger Mousey

Still Bigger Mousey

I don’t even bait my traps, just lay them along the paths I now know mice will always follow, so I’m not feeding the ‘second’ mouse either.

Second Mouse

Second Mouse

January 18, 2018 Posted by | photography | , | Leave a comment

Haven’t seen a mouse for a while

On this day, since I haven’t seen a mouse for a while…

Famous Mouse Trap

Famous Mouse Trap

January 13, 2018 Posted by | Civilian | , | Leave a comment

Unwanted early Christmas present

I thought the arrival of frosty days had curtailed the steady stream of unwanted little visitors, and occasional morning discoveries.

We’ve had a turn in the weather, and the line appears to have restarted as the Foehn Effect (it’s real, look it up) has brought mildness, and temperatures that have gone up to 12 deg C during day, and even night.

I actually heard this on during the night, and this was the result once it got light enough to see what had been going on in the dark.

Mouse Trapped

Mouse Trapped

I think they’re getting bigger – it may be time to go check out rat traps.

I saw someone who had a real infestation, and found a ‘trap’ that hangs on the rim of a bucket of water.

The working part is a smooth platform, hinged to drop down when the weight of a mouse overcomes a light magnetic catch.

Adding the magnet means the mouse has to be near the end of the platform before it tips, ensuring it cannot jump off and escape.

Update

The few frozen days taught me it was a waste of time and effort to bury these corpses, just to be neat and tidy.

I just leave them out back, and is by magic, they have disappeared next morning.

It seems this works even BETTER in warm weather.

Deposited ‘Christmas Mouse’ at 13:01.

Had to go outside again at 13:06 – no sign of mousey.

Wonder who claimed the body?

December 24, 2017 Posted by | photography | , | Leave a comment

Bad luck mouse

It’s a while since the last mouse invasion, three months, and this lucky fellow almost made it to my (internal) back door.

I usually have a look around every morning, and had begun to think the cold weather (and my cold house) has maybe seen them off for a while – but no such luck (for me at least).

Legs in the air, this was the sight that greeted me when I opened the door this afternoon.

This guy had made it past four other traps to get this far – glad I decided to up my protection against the little invaders.

That’s the back door threshold visible on the right.

Bad Luck Mouse

Bad Luck Mouse

I resisted the temptation to reach for one of the kitchen knifes, and check the veracity of this image, collected a little while ago.

Somehow, it just seems… unlikely.

Mouse Kiwi Fruit

Mouse Kiwi Fruit

December 18, 2017 Posted by | photography | , , | Leave a comment

Rain don’t keep meeces away

After a few days’ respite, it looks as if curiosity killed the mouse this morning, and they’re back.

Although I’m hardly suggesting they were ever away, just not trying to get in.

We’re rather soggy at the moment, with more rain than we’ve seen in a while, and I wondered if would keep the little invaders away – clearly not.

No pic evidence of this morning’s catch – our garden bin collection was on the way (we have a selection of wheelie bins to segregate our assorted wastes into) and since I’m fed up digging graves I wanted to make sure I caught this collection since I had filled the bin and it was ready to go this morning.

However, it gives me a chance to include a pic I got from someone who was having a problem getting their ‘little friends’ to obligingly wander into the waiting traps, and they consulted a local ‘expert’ who advised the following.

Occult Mouse Trap

Occult Mouse Trap

I think…

I’ll pass on this one.

Many years spent watching education films produced by Hammer Films suggest this is actually more likely to conjure up a giant demon mouse, rather than attract any ordinary one to the trap!

October 20, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Aaaaaand another one

No wonder I was getting unwanted guests!

If the past few weeks are typical of the ‘passing trade’ just outside my back door, I’ve actually been lucky and the fact that there have been long periods with no ‘guests’ is becoming surprising.

Given I am not attracting these pests by having fragrant bait in any of the traps (as can be seen below), the catch rate based on my careful trap placement on their rat runs (do mice have ‘mice runs’) suggests there are loads of them running around.

I’m beginning to think it’s a pity the build of the outhouse precludes a simple lower edge sealed threshold for the doors. I could, but it would kill the area ventilation and be major trip hazard due to placement (tried once, it was a real nuisance, and was better at keeping rainwater IN than keeping it OUT).

Guess I’ll just have to keep the mouse burial ground open.

A bit of digging is worth the effort, if it keeps them out.

Poor Odds Mouse

Poor Odds Mouse

This one REALLY had a bad day night… caught in TWO traps!

When I dealt with the corpse, I found his butt was in the trap on the left and his head in trap on the right – and he’d actually gnawed away a sizeable portion of the one on the left. I know where the traps were, and where the gnawed plastic was, but it took me a while to work out what had happened, and it’s a pity mice don’t do the lottery – chances are with the luck I know this one just had, it would have won.

Even had a go at the base!

If mice had wallets, I’d dig him up and make him pay for a new one – but mice don’t wear trousers.

I didn’t notice the base damage until I saw the profile, at the top of the pic…

Gnawed Trap

Gnawed Trap

October 5, 2017 Posted by | photography | , | Leave a comment

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