THE INTRODUCTION (11/24): It’s a typical story. A house is bought and sold with the understanding that the rodent infestation the home inspector found evidence for in the crawlspace has been “remediated,” but the pest control company who was hired to remediate failed to find and exclude a few important entry holes. Specifically, in Stacey and Carl’s case, the holes the mice were using to gain access to The Pink Paradise on the other side of their cozy Homefront were: a) small gap around cable through vent along side of house; b) gaps around the dryer vent through vent in back; c) two gaps on either side of chimney; d) and entry holes next to the crawlspace hatch were mice, entering through gap under garage door, could access the crawl space. Also the Homefront is in danger of tunneling, which is typically done by rodents from inside after they find an easy breach in a Homefront.
What makes this infestation unique is, the mice explored the crawlspace and found it wanting for insulation. So they quested up the water lines to find The Pink Paradise, which explains why Stacey and Carl heard scratching in their upstairs bathroom.
ENVIRONMENTAL DIAGNOSIS: Entry Hole Disorder
THE ACTION PLAN: I estimate I will be able to reach an ending for this average house mouse infestation and exclude the entry holes listed above in 2-3 chapters. My take longer if rats and squirrels join The Action. In The End, I expect to strengthen the Homefront to prevent mice, rats, and other wildlife from exploiting its entry hole disorder.
CHAPTER ONE (12/6): When I greeted Karl at the door and he reported no new signs of activity, I tried to explain what the difference between a 2 service ending for mouse infestations and a 3 or 4 service ending, saying, “It’s kind of arbitrary, but I usually schedule a third if I catch more than 5 mice.”
Moments later, I realized I had caught 6. They were all where I expected them to be: entry hole in back, next to The Pink Paradise, and along the runway to the garage entry hole.
When I emerged from excluding all the entry holes on the list (including the interior access points to The Pink Paradise) and doing some minor duct repair for fun, I reported back to Karl.
“Looks like we have a cliffhanger here,” I smiled through my mask. Then I handed him a zip locked bag of rat food (aka Wilderness Guide’s wildlife monitors) and said, “Wait for 2 weeks, then drop this monitor just below the crawlspace hatch. You don’t have to crawl in, or dump out the rat food. If they’re there, they will find it. Then wait another 2 weeks and check for activity. If you see that the food has been eaten, or the bag has been torn…I’ll return and do the initial set up for trapping service again for free.”
The thought that crossed my mind when I was pulling out of their driveway was, “I hope this is The End. Heaven knows I’d hate to become known as the George Lucas of pest control.”
No matter how our little cliffhanger turns out, Stacey and Karl’s Homefront is now a lot more secure!