Why we bought D-Con Covered Mouse Traps
Since we moved into our home two years ago we have had trouble with voles digging little trenches through our lawn and nesting in our flower beds and under our side stoop. We have also noticed them going under our front walk way. We tried some other traps last year that would just be sprung and never caught anything. This spring started out ok, but then within a weeks time I notice the area beside our side stoop was all dug out and you could see the runs in the grass leading to and from the stoop. It was time to take drastic action against the dreaded voles!
Voles or Moles?
We have had experience with both problems and there is a huge difference between the two. Voles look like field mice but slightly larger. You can tell the difference between voles and moles by their habits. Moles will dig runs under the ground so you will feel the ground sink when you step on them. Voles will actually dig their runs on top of the grass, digging out a little trench for them to run through the grass without being detected by prey. Moles will nest in holes mounded up in the middle of your yard, where voles will seek shelter in flower beds and under structures. The other difference in voles and moles is that moles will be eating grubs from your lawn where voles like to eat the roots of your trees and bulbs in the ground. Neither are very good for your lawn but these traps are way to small for the much larger Mole, but perfect for voles.
How D-Con Covered Traps work
Setting these traps was really quite easy. If it does not seem to set right away, realize that the trip is very sensitive so you have to steady the little plastic piece that snaps the trap when the mouse steps on it before setting the trap. There is a little cup for bait and you can put peanut butter or something like that in there. I used a bait by tomcat that said it would be a better attractant. It comes in a tiny bottle and it was easy to squirt a few drops of the gel in the cup. When the trap is sprung it kills the mouse.
Setting the trap
To set the trap, lift up the hinged cover to expose the area where you put the bait. Apply your bait in the little cup. I set the trap before closing the lid so that I can make sure it catches. There is a lever on the top of the trap that you push down and it catches on a little plastic thing inside the trap. If you look inside you can see where it catches and you may need to steady the piece where the mouse steps to get it to catch. Once caught try to keep the trap level and close the lid. Place the open end of the trap so that the opening is facing the opening where the mice or voles are.
How well it worked
The D-Con Covered Trap worked better than anything we had tried. I do hate killing and like to live along side whenever possible but in the case of the voles nesting under our stoop I had to do something. We placed two traps on either side of the side stoop and one side caught a vole almost immediately. I checked an hour later after resetting the trap, and we had caught another. I have a feeling that perhaps the voles go in one door and back in through the other which is why we were only catching them on the one side. I checked the next morning and there were no more so perhaps two voles did all this damage. Hopefully they were not there long enough to have little voles in the nest. Had I waited longer there could have been a whole army of them.
Emptying the Trap
You will be able to tell if your trap has been tripped by looking at the position of the lever. If the lever is up then your trap has sprung. Looking inside should easily reveal if you have caught anything. The first vole we caught was firmly caught and dead and not bloody or anything. So I just opened the lid held it over the trash and pressed on the lever to release the vole. The second one was dead and bloody. I am not sure what happened differently but this vole was not actually caught in the trap but very much dead, so he just slid out of the trap when I held it over the trash.
The Ick Factor
If you are a bit squeamish you may not care for dealing with dead rodents and I really did not care for it much either. It just had to be done. I could have bought a trap that would just dispose of the Vole and the trap but I felt buying a reusable trap would be better than throwing away multiple traps. The first vole we caught was not so bad but the second one was bloody and I nearly just threw out the entire thing but ended up washing it off and reusing it. It really was kinda gross. If there was service that would set, check and take care of the traps I would gladly pay for it, so I would not have to do it.
Traps VS Poison
The reason that I chose trapping vs putting out poison is that I did not want to endanger other wildlife besides the ones I wanted to get rid of. Animals can get into the poison which can hurt or kill them. Also a bird or animal eating a poisoned prey can suffer ill effects as well.
Cost and Value of D-Con Covered Traps
I paid a little over $4 for a trap at Menards. We got two of them plus the attractant so for a total of $11 we were able to take care of our problem and we have the supplies on hand to repeat the process as necessary. I have to say that this is a good value for the money.