RODENTS AND ASTHMA PROBLEM STATEMENT Mice are associated with asthma. The proteins in mouse urine are the main allergen. Mouse saliva and feces can also trigger asthma. Rodent-associated diseases affecting humans besides asthma include plague, typhus and rat-bite fever. As a group, rodents have certain behavioral characteristics that are helpful in understanding them. They are perceptive to touch, with sensitive whiskers and guard hairs on their bodies. Thus, they favor running along walls and between objects that allow them constant contact with vertical surfaces. They are known to have poor eyesight and are alleged to be colorblind. Contrastingly, they have an extremely sharp sense of smell and a keen sense of taste. Rodents will gnaw to gain entrance and to obtain food. Mice are very suspicious of any new objects or food found in their surroundings. This characteristic is one reason rodents can survive in dangerous environments. This avoidance reaction accounts for pre-baiting (baiting without poisoning) in control programs. Initially, rats or mice begin by taking only small amounts of food. If the animal becomes ill from a sub-lethal dose of poison, its avoidance reaction is strengthened and a poisoning program becomes extremely difficult to complete. If rodents are hungry or exposed to an environment where new objects and food are commonly found, such as a dump, their avoidance reaction may not be as strong; in extreme cases of hunger, it may even be absent. The presence of mice is indicated by sitings (less common) and droppings. They are attracted by food, water, shelter and warmth. Rodent Control Strategies Eliminate Food Sources To accomplish this, it is imperative for the homeowner or occupant to do a good job of solid waste management. This requires proper storing, collecting and disposing of refuse. Eliminate Breeding and Nesting Places This is accomplished by removing rubbish from near the home, including excess lumber, firewood and similar materials. These items should be stored above ground with 18 inches of clearance below them.
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- Spring '14
- pH, Mouse, Allergy, Rodent