Monday, February 11, 2008

Mouse Problem

The last few days here have been mild, dry and sunny! It would be so great if that were to continue for just a few more days. I feel so much better after even a few short hours of thin winter sun. The constant rain and drizzle can really do my head in.

I took advantage of the nice weather over the weekend to see to some bits in the garden and on Saturday, I cleaned out the big greenhouse.

Almost immediately, I discovered that there was a major mouse problem in the greenhouse. Any seed or bird food that has been stored in there, has been nibbled on by the mice. They've made nests in odd corners and boxes and chewed up things to make nests. In short, they've been having a rare old time in this greenhouse.

I started by hauling everything out of the greenhouse and sweeping it up. The mice had made a nice little nest under an old wood cupboard. I fear that it is ruined now. They chewed access holes in the bottom and the bottom shelf was full of mouse droppings and mouse wee. I really hated carrying out things that might have contained mice. I was so afraid that a mouse was going to run up my arm. I'm not afraid of mice, but I sure didn't want to be surprised by one.

When everything was emptied and swept, I saw that there were two holes in the concrete that had mysteriously grown larger. The mice are living underneath the concrete! Safe from preditors and with a limitless supply of bird seed, these mice had it made!

I started making the greenhouse mouse resistant by putting all the bird food into my big 5 gallon plastic bucket that I used for root beer making. The rim of the bucket is very cracked and I'll get a new one for root beer making and this one will do just fine for holding bird food.

Today, I purchased a very small amount of concrete mix, brought the concrete mix home and got to work plugging up the mousy access to the greenhouse. It was a job that took mere minutes to mix and plop into place. The concrete will have set by now and the open access to the greenhouse is now finished.

While I was cleaning up yesterday, Julio our cat was making himself very busy catching fat mice. The thing is, there were lots of mice and Julio only deals with mice one at a time. Julio spent hours tormenting his little rodent victims and by sundown, our cat was wiped out!

Now everything in this greenhouse is ready for a good scrub. The glass needs to be clean and then we're about ready for seed trays and spring.

The other little greenhouse, the one I used for growing tomatoes needs a whole bunch of new glass. I hope to get it re-glazed very soon. I can put the glass in the sides and the roof window myself, but I will need help with the greenhouse door. I think I'll just take the glass free greenhouse door to the place where greenhouse glass is sold and have them show me how to do it.

I think that in addition to the tomatoes in the small greenhouse, I am going to try growing some cucumbers.

I don't want anybody to tell me that the mice are now going to migrate back into the house. If they do, I've got the mouse trap all set.

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