A.This is a million-dollar question without (unfortunately) a million-dollar answer. Effective rodent management is based on exclusion — you have to keep them out. Killing rodents once they have entered the structure doesn't solve the problem, because there are always more rodents to take their places. Also, killing rodents with poison bait inside insulation causes other problems: When they die, they decay and smell really bad! Plus, they attract insects and other decomposers.

Keeping mice out is a big challenge. They can enter a gap that's only 1/4 inch in diameter. But control is not hopeless. Mice begin to enter homes in search of food and shelter during the early fall when the weather turns colder. Establishing an active trapping effort around the outside of the home during this time will pay big dividends. Tight...

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