House mice are the most commonly encountered and economically important of the commensal rodents. House mice are not only a nuisance, damage/destroy materials by gnawing, and eat and contaminate stored food, they are also of human health importance as disease carriers or vectors.
Adults with head and body length are about 2.5-3/75” long, tail length 2.75-4” long. Fur is smooth, color is usually dusty gray above and light gray or cream below but fur color varies considerably from area to area or location to location.
The house mouse is a prolific breeder. Mice have keen senses except for sight because they cannot see clearly beyond 6” and are color blind. They are excellent climbers and can run up most roughened walls. Mice can swim but prefer not to do so.
The most common way for mice to transmit disease organisms is by contaminating food with their droppings and/or urine. Mice will eat many kinds of food but seeds and insects are the preferred.
Their preferred nesting sites are dark, secluded places where there is abundant nesting material nearby and little chance of disturbance. Nesting materials include paper products, cotton, packing materials, wall/attic insulation, fabrics, etc. In rural and suburban areas, house mice live outdoors in wooded areas, fields, croplands, yards, etc., where they build their nest in vegetative debris, natural cavities, burrows. Around structures, they follow warm air currents and food odors coming out through door thresholds, utility line entrances, etc. into a suitable site.