Mice

The House Mouse [Mus domestica] is very common in most areas of the UK and prefers to live indoors although it may live outdoors part or all of the year.

It is sometimes confused with 3 other species: the Field Mouse [Apodemus sylvaticus], the Yellow Necked Field Mouse [Apodemus flavicollis] and the Harvest Mouse [Micromys minutus].

House Mice grow to approx. 100mm, taking as little as 35 days to reach maturity. Lifespan is approx. 9-18 months but can be much longer (sometimes several years).

The female has up to 8 litters in her lifetime with an average litter size of 6 and can give birth as frequeently as every 24-28 days. In optimal conditions (usually found indoors) mice can breed throughout the year.

Mice can squeeze through gaps as small as 6mm in diameter, they are excellent climbers and can run along pipes, ropes and wires. They have been known to cause fires by gnawing on electric cables and can cause significant damage to pipes and building fabric.

Although they pose less of a danger than rats from disease they are still a significant hazard in the transmission of some food-borne illnesses and pathogenic bacteria (such as Salmonella, Campylobacter-Entiritis and Shigella (Dysentery).

Like rats their droppings and fur poses a significant hazard of contamination of food products and food preparation and storage areas. Because they are incontinent they also urinate everywhere they go.

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