10.23.2014

Science, Technology, Engineering... and Mouse!


  So, there was this mouse in the house. Chicken
  feed seems to attract all sorts of little critters-
  squirrels, chipmunks, voles, and mice. (Well, the
  vole was in the compost.) The mouse was the only
  critter to make its way inside and Janie Kathryn and
  I were absolutely, positively against snap traps and
  poison. It's just so cruel!

  During my Gibson days, I used a live trap to catch a
  mouse in my office. It worked like a charm. Little
  Evander simply could not resist the temptation of
  Kix cereal. Note the hole in his little ear, hence the 
  name. (Also note that I have a photo of Evander,
  which should be indicative of my reluctance to kill
  such creatures.) So, I purchased another trap,
  confident it would do the trick.

Plan 1
As it turned out, today's mouse was much more cunning than sweet, little, holey-ear Evander. So, Janie Kathryn and I had to put our heads together and apply a little S.T.E.M. research to this situation. We decided on three alternative traps, set them up, and anxiously waited to see which one would work.
Trap #1 was the most intricately planned. Looking at our sketch, it seems very unlikely that this contraption would work. However, we found video footage of a mouse taking the bait. So, we were hopeful!

 
Plan #1 did NOT work!
...not even with a trail of peanut butter and cranberries leading up the yardstick bridge.

Plan 2
On to #2, the simple toilet paper roll trap- another google find. It was easy enough to set up, but I had my doubts. After all, our mouse showed no signs of elevating himself from the floor of the room where the chicken feed was stored.

Plan #2 was also a bust.
So, we moved on to Plan #3. Plan 3 was very Tom-and-Jerry, but it was all Janie Kathryn and she just knew it would work. We had walked in on the mouse several times, munching on chicken feed. Really, it was just a matter of getting him where we wanted him and yanking the string fast enough. We eventually took to yanking the string from another room, just in case he was in the box. He never was.


Plan 3
Plan 3 was a failure too.
I know what you're thinking if you've made it this far into our critter-catching calamity. Why didn't I just move the chicken feed to a rodent-proof location? Well, I could've done that, but not before I caught the little freeloader! If I took away the smorgasbord he might move into parts of the house that truly mattered, like my kitchen!

In the end, the mouse was caught. 
Though I feel accurate in saying that the mouse was caught by a "live trap," he didn't exactly live through his capture. He did die a very natural death and gave his life so that another Skeen House occupant could prove his value. That's right, Fritz the cat took care of business! He delivered his kill right to the end of the hallway, where we were sure to find it. 

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