Can You Have Just One Mouse in the House?
Sadly, the answer to this question is a resounding no. It would be very rare — almost impossible — for there to be just one mouse in the house. These are very sociable animals, often living a large number of them in one nest. Not just that, they breed all-year-round, and when you try to cull a large number of their group, such as with poison, the animals up the ante, picking up the pace as far as reproduction is concerned.
If you see one mouse, you’ve got trouble on your hands. We highly recommend that you hunt out holes or patches of mouse activity, and then place snap traps in those spots. The humane approach — the only approach — in this situation is to kill the rodents.
You can’t live-trap them and then release them, because they will more than likely find their way back in no time at all.
You can’t live-trap and release mice when you don’t know where they are, and when you have a decent-side infestation in the building, locating every single rodent is going to be almost impossible. You can try finding the nest, though. Knowing where the nest is means that you have a head start for working out trap placement.
Released mice don’t often survive ‘in the wild’ for long. Some of the released rats have never seen a rural setting before in their life, so expecting a very much domesticated house-mouse that has been living in your kitchen for the last year of its life to survive out there is asking a lot.
How will I know how many mice I have in my house?
If you see a number of different-looking mice, a large pile of feces, feces spread all over the place, or actual damage caused by the mice, there’s a good chance you’ve got a pretty decent infestation to deal with. In terms of droppings, the average single adult mouse can create 50-100 individual droppings per day, of around 2mm in length maximum.
If you can hear a lot of scratching or squeaking noises after the sun goes down, you’re hearing signs of an infestation. The louder and more prominent these noises are, the larger the infestation you’ll have. You may also notice that more of the usually-nocturnal creatures come out during the day when there are lots of them in one space, although it is not unusual to see mice out of the nest at any point of the day or night.
If you buy a couple of traps, set them, and catch mice right away, or seem to catch a lot of mice once you’ve removed the carcasses and then put them back again, it might be time to do some further investigation. If you constantly and consistently capture mice in your trap, you have a very big infestation, and one that you might need to call the professionals in for.