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How you can use your excess Halloween candy to get rid of mice

I live in an older home in Halifax and often have mice in the fall season. How do I get rid of them? Thanks, Mr. Butler!

— Kathy

As many people know,  mice become more common indoors in the fall because they want to come in from the cold.

Well, as one caller from Nova Scotia suggested on a recent radio show, you could buy a white mouse and let that loose in your home — then when the outdoor mice encounter it, they’ll think they’ve seen a ghost and run away. Alright, that’s a terrible joke (and trust me, it’s not the way to get rid of mice) but as it happens, there’s another Halloween-related theme that comes in handy when dealing with the pesky rodents.

When I was a working butler, we had mouse problems at my employers’ home in the country. I was taught the following trick, and it really works:

  •  Get a large glass jar such as an empty pickle jar.

  • Fill the base of the jar with at most one cup of corn syrup, as well as a few pieces of broken chocolate (possibly from your Halloween candy pile) and half a handful of peanuts.

  • Put the jar in the area where you have mice, then take a yard stick and lean it so it’s resting on the open neck of the jar and the floor.

The mice will smell the concoction of sweets and nuts, walk up the yardstick and fall into the jar. They’ll be unable to get out as long as you pick a large enough jar.

Now, I know there are many chemical solutions for getting rid of mice, but let me tell you, this good old-fashioned method works like a charm every time, and after you catch a few the mouse problem is all gone. Good luck, Kathy, and do let us know how it goes.

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