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Clear Your Home Of Pests With The Best Mouse Trap

While mouse traps may be effective over the short run, if a mouse population has become established in your house or home, the chances are that trapping alone may not cure the problem. But they’re a start, and if kept baited and active at all times, they’ll take care of the overly curious mouse looking for a new place to live before it can settle in.

Modern traps are designed to be effective and user friendly. There are different types which work effectively, including live traps, automatic types, and even newer electronic options. You can get a better idea of these different trap types on our list of the best mouse traps in 2021 and which might be best suited for your situation by reading through our buyer’s guide provided below.

Most Effective Traps To Catch Mice

JT Eaton Jawz Plastic Trap - Best Mouse Trap Overall

When the question was asked to build a better trap, the J.T Eaton company came up with the J.T. Eaton Jawz Plastic Mouse Trap. This is a superior design of the familiar snap trap, that is just as effective yet easier to use in every way. Instead of a metal platform, this trap has a bait cup that securely holds bait inside. It sets by just pulling back the top lever until it locks in place. That means no more snapped fingers with an ease of setting that is unheard of with any other trap. You can even set it with your foot if you don't want to touch it. They are 100 percent effective when a mouse triggers the trap, and they are relatively inexpensive so that both the trap and the mouse can be disposed of. In this way, you never have to touch the mouse.

The Better Mousetrap - Runner Up

Made by Intruder Industries, The Better Mousetrap truly is a more modern and better design. This trap works on the same principle as the best trap on this listing. You pull back a top lever to set it, the trigger locks in place and then place the trap against the wall in a known mouse run. They are 100 percent effective when a mouse triggers the trap, and you can either pull back the setting lever to dispose of the mouse, or just dispose of the trap with captured mouse and set a new trap. Although comparable in ease of use and effectiveness to the best trap on this list, they are a bit more expensive overall. You can't go wrong using these, but you'll pay a bit more for the cost of admission.

Seabright Laboratories Catch and Release - Best Humane Mouse Trap

Even though there is no such thing as the perfect "humane" trap, the Seabright Laboratories Smart Mouse Trap comes awfully close. Endorsed by Humane Societies and Animal Rights Organizations in the U.S. and Worldwide, simply bait the trap at the far end by opening the rear door, set the fulcrum lever, and you are done. When the mouse walks on the balanced platform, it trips the fulcrum and the door slams shut. Release is equally easy. Pull up the rear door and the mouse runs free. Wash, bait, reset and catch another mouse. A beautiful, simple and effective design. The best of the best!

Havahart 2-Door Mouse Cage - Honorable Mention

If you are looking for the most trusted name in humane traps, the Havahart X-Small 2-Door Trap is the one for you. Havahart traps are the most respected humane traps in the industry. Why? Because they work! The two door design gives a mouse a false sense of security as it can see all the way through. To a mouse, it looks like a clear passageway that is open on both ends. The twin doors are easy to set with a fulcrum lever beneath the balanced platform. Bait, set and let the trap work. Merely pull the door rod to open the door for release, and the mouse runs free. Although not inexpensive, it is quality made with a reputation that is second to none.

Ketch-All Multiple Catch Mousetrap - Also Consider

For a mechanical repeater mouse trap, check out the Ketch-All Multiple Catch Mousetrap w/ Clear Lid. Using a simple wind-up mechanism, when a mouse investigates the entrance to the trap, it triggers a spring wound platform that flicks the mouse inside of the trap where it can't get out. This trap can be used with bait or left along known mouse runs. It will catch six mice before it needs to be emptied, and the see through top lets you positively know how many mice are inside. Once released, wind it back up to reset it, place it back down and let the trap do the work.

Buyer's Guide

Without a doubt, a mice infestation is a nuisance. Although capable of carrying disease via parasites, they’re mostly just annoying to have around, and if they get into a food supply, they can soil and ruin it. Once established, mice breed quickly, so it’s best to eliminate these pests as fast as possible, or they can (and will) overwhelm a household or business.

Invented in the 1890’s, the original snap-trap is a spring-loaded wire arm mounted to a piece of wood, snaps shut on the neck of a feeding mouse, killing it instantly. The trap can then be reloaded with bait, the arm reset, and the trap can be used again and again.

In the decades since, people have been trying to re-engineer and build a better mouse trap. To that end, there are a host of designs available from the classic manual trap to high tech electronic mouse trap options. You'll have to figure out what type works best for your situation, but if in doubt, simply start off with the familiar and easy to use snap trap.

Mouse Trap Types

Manual/Snap

All manual traps begin with the ubiquitous snap trap. The differences between these snap-trap types are nearly endless, with some having baited platforms that snap together, some that snap downwards and some that snap upwards, some are made to be used in a horizontal position and some are used in a vertical orientation.

Some of these are built to be disposable, so that you throw both the mouse and the trap away. Others have an easy-release mechanism so you can quickly dispose of the mouse and reset the trap. There are many variations of this type of trap, but they all use a spring loaded trigger system so that when the mouse takes the bait, the trap springs shut.

All snap traps have a spring loaded arm or a platform, propelled by a spring. They will feature some sort of bait cup or a bait station which triggers the spring when it’s disturbed as the mouse feeds. You’ll always need to physically set the trap by pulling back on the spring mechanism after the bait has been placed on the bait station. They must be placed around known areas of mice infestation and require regular checks, often several times per day.

Mice rarely become trap wary, which is why one trap placed in the same place will often continue to catch mice. But it is always a good idea to change the location of the trap when a few mice have been caught, just in case.

Live Traps

Live traps also come in many variations as well. Because mice are so small, these are essentially specialty traps that can only be used for mice. All of these different types lure a mouse into a trap using bait or scented food drops, and when the mouse takes the bait, a door closes behind them.

These live catch and release traps have many shapes and designs, but they all are essentially a small rectangular container where the bait is placed at the far end. A mouse enters one side, which is on the ground, and when it goes to get the bait, it passes over a fulcrum. The balance then shifts to the other side, rocking the original end off the ground and closing a trap door behind it.

Once the mouse is caught, you can release it alive and unharmed into an area away from your home or business, or you can humanely dispose of it. You may have to rinse out the trap before reusing it but this trap will continue to work over and over again.

Using a live trap means dealing with a live mouse once it is caught. However, if you are against killing mice for any reason, these are the only traps to use that will virtually guarantee that a mouse is captured unhurt and unharmed.

Electronic Traps

The newest type of mouse traps, electronic types are made to use food or pheromone drops as bait. These traps are boxy or can-shaped with an open end and a closed end. The mouse travels inside, goes to where the bait has been placed and once at the bait station, an electronic current is passed into the mouse, killing it.

Electronic mouse trap comes as either plug-in models or battery operated types. These traps must be checked regularly but some models feature an exterior light-up bulb when the trap has terminated a mouse. This feature makes them easy to check from a distance, and once a mouse has been caught, it can be quickly disposed of by dumping it out the open end.

Automatic Traps

These traps are best used for larger infestations because they can hold a multitude of mice before they need to be emptied, making them a staple in commercial settings where mice can be a problem. Large and bulky, these traps work best when placed on mouse runs where mice congregate. Live bait is used and pheromone drops will also work well to lure the mouse inside. Once captured, the mice can be released or disposed of humanely.

Automatic traps typically feature a spring-loaded platform which flings mice inside of the trap when it is disturbed. The scent of food and the scurrying mice inside attract other mice so that they keep stepping on the platform and continue to get trapped.

Since these are repeating traps, the spring is wound up so it can catch mouse after mouse without being checked or emptied. These traps re-set themselves and will catch one to two dozen mice before they need to be wound up again.

Glue Traps

These traps are generally square shaped and coated with a gluey substance. They can either be baited by placing the bait directly in the center of the trap or available pre-baited with a pheromone scent added into the glue. Sticky traps are made to be disposable, and in most cases, they will only catch one mouse at a time.

Once caught, the mouse will still be alive, and they should be disposed of in a humane manner. However, many people simply throw the trap (and the mouse) away; the mouse goes on to perish from exposure, dehydration, or starvation.

Wildlife organizations, such as PETA and the RSPCA have condemned the use of these glue traps and several business organizations throughout the country, including the Charles Schwab Corporation, have banned these traps in their facilities.

What About Mouse Poisons?

If you're feeling overwhelmed by an infestation, it can be tempting to use mouse poison to try to control the overall population. While there are a variety of mouse poison products available, we firmly recommend against using any of them. Many of these poisons rely on substances that have been banned for consumer use in several states, so they're not always universally available.

Beyond that, there's simply no way to predict where the mouse will be when it finally dies from ingesting the poison. Mice will retreat to their nesting area when they feel threatened, and they tend to find quiet places that are well beyond reach - even to professionals. A dead mouse will begin to decompose eventually, and the stench will permeate the walls of your home and will possibly be a bigger nuisance than the mouse itself.

Another problem is that mice are a popular food source for many predators, including ones you might not normally think about: hawks, owls, and even rarely-seen animals such as foxes or mountain lions. The poison that kills the mouse won't expire with the rodent, and will continue to remain active and deadly to any other creature that consumes it. While the mouse may be dead, the poison will continue to work its way up the food chain and sicken or kill everything else it comes into contact with. Beyond other wild animals, these poisons can also present a danger to your own pets.

If the above traps aren't as effective as you need them to be, we recommend contacting a professional instead of experimenting with mouse poisons.

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