If you know anything at all, you know that mice love cheese, right? You need to look no further than Tom and Jerry cartoons and children’s books all around the world. It just so happens that everything you thought you knew may turn out to be wrong. Hold onto your hats because you may need to rethink all of your preconceived notions about what mice eat!
Dr. David Holmes of Manchester Metropolitan University released the results of his research in 2006, in which he did a broad study on what kind of foods attract and repel animals. In the study, he found that mice are not attracted to cheese… at all. They will eat it if they are desperate, but the wide range of other foods that they prefer means that your mousetrap set with cheese is unlikely to catch any mice. If you opted for a particularly smelly piece of cheese, your chances are even slimmer. Mice have a great sense of smell, and stinky cheese will drive them away.
The idea that mice love cheese is so widely held that you would think there must be some truth to it. Digging deep into history might give us some insight. For most of human history, diets were extremely limited. Ancient peoples kept food that was well preserved and easy to store. This included meats, grains, and cheeses. One theory of how the myth got perpetuated is that meats and grains were covered and stored to avoid mice, but cheeses needed to be allowed to breathe. It is possible that since cheeses were the easiest food to access, people saw mice bite marks and thought that mice must really like cheese.
It seems far-fetched, but another theory is that the myth actually came from Greek mythology. The God, Apollo, was often called “Apollo the Mouse.” In stories, Apollo’s child Aristaeus was said to have taught the world how to produce cheese. This connection between the mouse and cheese may have been passed down through the generations right down to modern times. Although no one knows exactly why the myth started, we now know it is just that… a myth!
What Do Mice Eat?
So, now that you know not to use cheese on your mouse traps, what should you use instead? Dr. Holmes and pet mouse owners throughout the world, have helped us with that one. Mice are most attracted to fruits, vegetables, and grains. Along with these things, people have also noticed that mice have an affinity for treats like peanut butter and chocolate. If you really want to catch a mouse, try using things like sweet cereal pieces, bread, bananas, or peanut butter. I have had the unfortunate need to test this out and can tell you with certainty that mice and rats love bread with Nutella. However, if you want to do the opposite and get rid of the pesky critters, you should use an ultrasonic repeller to deter attacks. High-frequency technology is a new but efficient way to fight mice infestations.
Any of these options are much more likely than cheese to help you catch those pesky rodents.
As the weather gets cooler, you might be seeing more rodents and other fall pests around your property. If you are fed up with mice or rats and need some help getting them under control, Six Brothers Pest Control is your go-to pest service in the Kansas City area. We offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our services because we are confident in our products and our experienced technicians. Give us a call today!