Rats and mice in the home are a real annoyance for homeowners, and even a danger. These uninvited creatures consume everything, from your organic tomatoes sitting on the kitchen table, to breadcrumbs underneath the refrigerator, spreading bacteria and pathogens in the process. They contaminate food and frequented areas with feces, urine, and hair. They carry diseases, such as spirochetal jaundice and murine typhus. They can even cause fires and electrical damage, by chewing electrical wires.
Getting rid of rodents can be a nuisance as well, to the earth, and to the health and safety of the indoor environment. Conventional repellents are chemical based. They are designed to poison and cause harm. Using an environmentally friendly rodent repellent is the green solution to toxic substances and other harmful methods of getting rid of rats and mice. With natural products, either purchased or homemade, and a few simple actions, natural pest control is possible.
There are a number of natural sprays that can be used to deter rodents. These products are usually one hundred percent plant-based, making them safe for use, even with children and pets. Mouse Away (http://www.dreamingearth.com/natural-pest-control.htm) and Fresh Cab (http://www.earth-kind.com/EkHPGWOVariable/tabid/467/Default.aspx) both offer natural rodent repellent sprays. They are not created to kill the animals, only to stop them from coming in the first place. No toxins are introduced into the environment, and no inhumane practices are used.
Homemade Green Solutions
Making a homemade repellent for mice and rats is simple and inexpensive. Rodents cannot stand the aroma of mint. Using pure peppermint and spearmint essential oils will eliminate rodent problems safely and effectively. Be sure to use real, natural essential oils. Synthetic fragrances are not going to work.
Put a few drops of peppermint (or spearmint) essential oil onto cotton balls, and leave in cupboards. Use cotton towels, soaked in a solution of mint oil and water. Use ten to fifteen drops of the oil for four cups of water. Ring excess water from the cloth, and then place anywhere that rodents may be entering the home, or spending time. As mice and rats generally come out at night while people are asleep, run an essential oil diffuser for twenty minutes before going to bed. This will spread the aroma molecules throughout the house.
If possible, plant mint outside the home. Mint grows quickly, and profusely. This will help prevent rodents from being attracted to your house in the first place. Also, you will have an almost endless supply of fresh mint to use indoors as a deterrent. Fresh leaves can be left in problem areas as well.
Tips for the Home
Other helpful measures for eliminating a rodent problem, aside from using an environmentally friendly rodent repellent, include keeping the home as clean as possible, and blocking any gateways into the house. Don’t leave food out. Keep fruits, vegetables, and breads in the refrigerator. Try cleaning floors and counter tops with a solution of water and mint essential oil. Go around the outside of the house, looking for small holes, which can be sealed with cement.
Natural pest control does take some effort, but in the end, it is more effective than poisoning or trapping animals. With a clean, minty home, mice and rats will have no interest in moving in.
Source: Bright Hub
Use Alternative Methods
When all else fails to keep rodents away, well, revert to caveman mode although in an eco-friendly way – use traps! Peanut butter is great bait so you might as well put it to use. If you don’t want to deal with the icky creatures, call your local pest control company to use their ultrasound and electric zappers on the critters. At least, you need not worry about humanely disposing of these pests!
And so, you helped the environment and you helped yourself, too, when you abstained from chemical rodenticides!
Source: Green Life
Rats and mice are very intelligent animals and can be difficult to outwit. However, their activities in and around human habitation are certainly not welcome. Rodents also cause major damage to stored crops and agricultural infrastructure. In areas where natural predators no longer occur, they become bold enough to venture out into orchards where they consume and carry away surprising quantities of crops (e.g. macadamia nuts). The answer is definitely NOT to put poisons out for them. Even so-called ‘environmentally friendly’ rat poisons still pose a danger to creatures such as owls that my prey on rodents that have ingested it. To start with, encourage natural predators such as owls, jackals, various species of mongoose and a number of other small carnivores. One way of helping owls to catch more rodents out in the fields is to erect perches at various intervals. Diurnal birds of prey will also utilize these perches. Certain snake species are partial to rats and mice. In the Mpumalanga Lowveld, the Brown House Snake (constrictor) and the Mozambique Spitting Cobra (venomous) are a rat’s nemesis. These snakes, among other species, are important rodent controllers and should not be killed if possible. Coming from a farm, I know how rat numbers can become so high that it is tempting to resort to poisons (many foreign and local produce buyers stipulate that rat poison bait stations must be present to comply with standards, e.g. EuropGap!). In cases such as these, it’s debatable whether natural rodent repellents will work on a large scale (although I’m going to try the mint in my house!). A much safer environmentally friendly alternative to poison is rat traps (many types available). Certain breeds of dogs are inherently good ratters (e.g. Jack Russel Terriers). Shooting rats at night with powerful airguns is another humane way of dealing with the problem; a well-placed shot kills them instantly and there is no collateral environmental damage. Remember not to touch rats with your bare hands and dispose of them safely. Ensure that your water supply is secure- rats will readily enter open water tanks and other water storage containers (they are good swimmers too). Rats may also make use of roof gutters; if you harvest rainwater from your roof, make sure you filter it if you intend drinking it.