How to Keep Rodents out of your Shed?


Mice are particularly well known for loving the shelter of a warm shed, so as the weather cools you can follow three basic steps to keep them from making your shed their home for the winter. “Garden buildings often offer the perfect environment for rodents,” says Mike Sullivan, CEO of The Posh Shed Company1, “They’re warm and dry, quiet and undisturbed, and often with the added benefit of a bird feed for sustenance and garden cushions providing superior bedding – what’s not to like!”.
1. Keeping Mice out of the Shed in the First Place
Mice are incredible at getting into small spaces. They will find the smallest of holes, then gnaw at it until their head fits through, and once that happens – they’re in! Inspect your shed regularly for holes, not just at ground level (they are adept climbers), and get them repaired as soon as possible. “A quick fix for any small holes is to pop some steel pan scourer in the hole and apply caulking around it.” says Mike, “We have developed a Rodent Proof Floor2 which provides a heavy duty wire welded mesh built into the floor, making it impossible for rats and mice to get through in the first place.”  
2. Don’t Leave Food Sources Available to Them
“This might sound like a no-brainer,” says Mike, “but we are not talking about the leftovers from a baking session. Mice will consider all sorts of food; bird feed is a common one, but also those sunflower seeds you are keeping for next year or even grass seed will provide an ideal mouse tasting menu.” If you keep these items in your shed, making sure that they are in a well-sealed container will avoid them being a draw to rodents. “Outside your shed, rotting berries left on fruit bushes can be irresistible to mice, so harvest them and discard with the household rubbish.” says Mike. “Likewise, compost will attract the little critters, so using a tumbler bin3 will help, but never add cooked foods to the bin – you’re just asking for trouble!” Mice love all nuts so think about any nut trees or bushes that you have or plan to have in your garden. If you are tidying up in the autumn – ensure that you discard the pile of acorns and beechnuts that you sweep up and don’t just leave them in a pile. “Rodents will also raid a squirrel or bird feeder quite happily or just harvest the dropped seeds from the ground,” says Mike, “so if you have a problem with mice, try removing your feeder for a couple of weeks and see if that works.” Consider water sources too – like all living animals, mice need water, so buckets full of rainwater, open water butts, unfilled plant pots and even leaky garden taps can all make your garden a more attractive home environment for them.
3. Keeping Potential Nesting Material Elsewhere
Old gardening magazines, cardboard, newspapers and patio furniture cushions all make wonderful mouse house material. “If you do keep these items in your shed, consider finding a hard, sealable container for them to live in”4 says Mike. “Metal is best but heavy duty plastic will also be a good deterrent”. As autumn draws to a close and the weather gets chillier, keep an extra vigilant eye out for signs of a furry infestation, “Holes in potential nesting materials, gnaw marks or unusual smells are all tell-tale signs” says Mike. Prevention is better than cure but if you have ‘got mice’ the best remedy is to call the pest control professionals5 quickly and sort the problem out before they set their sights even closer to your home.

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