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Open Access Publications from the University of California

TRANSONIC PRO Sonic/Ultrasonic Units Reduce Mouse Problems in Home

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Mice in homes leave droppings and urine and are vectors for Hanta virus and Lyme’s disease. This study tested whether ultrasounds from a TRANSONIC PRO, Bird-X Inc. Chicago Il., (hereafter T-PRO) significantly reduced mouse problems in an old farm house. One T-PRO was used on “quiet volume” (frequency range 20 kHz-45 kHz at 72 - 78 dB @ 0.5 m) for all tests. Three paired tests were conducted, one pair for identical periods of autumn for 2009 and 2010, two for full year cycles 2012 to 2013, 2013 to 2014, 2015 to 2016, and 2016 to 2017. Efficacy was assessed using indirect evidence of ultrasound detection/avoidance by mice based on absence of mice trapped in the house or droppings counted on kitchen counters during test periods when the T-PRO was “ON” versus similar counts when the T-PRO was “OFF.” Mice were free to leave the areas of the sounds and the house entirely, and thus failed to evidence habituation. In all years six peanut butter baited Victor brand snap traps were kept on the top three basement steps below the 2.5-m × 1.1-m entrance hall extending from the exterior door to an inner hall door. The latter was kept closed, but had a 1-cm gap under it that permitted mice to enter the kitchen area. In the three test periods when the T-PRO ultrasonic sounds were being broadcast, nine mice were caught and 14 droppings found on the kitchen counter; versus 91 mice caught and 154 droppings counted when the T-PRO was turned “OFF.” A two tailed T-Test indicated a P = 0.0007, T = 9.2998 df = 4, with a mean of 30.33 mice caught/test cycle with the unit “OFF” versus a mean of 3.67/cycle when it was “ON.” No changes were made in house/hallway during this study. Seasons tested matched precisely for multiple years reducing probability that annual variations in mouse populations near the house might have caused random spikes in mouse numbers trapped. Snap traps and the T-PRO presented an effective integrated pest management system resulting in a nearly mouse-free house.

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