For centuries, people have been searching for the “best mouse trap.”
At first, you’d think mouse traps are all the same…
But before you rush out and purchase what you think “might” be a good trap for your home or office, put a little more research into your specific mouse problem.
And it just so happens that this article is a perfect resource for those people who need a reliable (and more importantly, an unbiased) source of information to kill those mice in your house.
Let’s get into the details…
Out of the 8 mouse traps I reviewed, below are my favorite. Take a quick look below to see what made the cut. Keep scrolling down to learn more about why I picked these and how to buy a mouse trap for yourself.
What Types of Mouse Traps Are Available?
There are three main types mouse traps to choose from.
There are two types of snap traps for mice. Bar snap traps and clam snap traps. They are similar in mechanics, but there are differences you should be aware of.
Want to skip all this research and just hire a decent exterminator for your mouse problem?
Bar Snap Traps
Bar snap traps are spring-loaded devices which are designed to attract mice with food. Bar traps are designed to slam down before the rodent can escape breaking the neck or crushing the skull. Not a pretty image, but extremely effective.There are many brands on the market composed of different materials, sizes and shapes but they all work pretty much the same.
The Cons of Bar Snap Traps
- Bar traps are hard to look at when they have caught a mouse due to the mess it makes after the kill. Not a pretty sight.
- Bar traps can injure pets and children if they encounter or trigger the bar on their fingers or paws. A strong bar mouse trap could do serious damage. Placement of any mouse trap must be in areas where children and pets can’t access
- Bar traps have the nasty habit of “biting” the hand that feeds them, in other words, be careful when you load the bait that it does not trigger on you
- The wood bar trap does not hold up well if placed in moist areas.
Clam Snap Traps
Clam traps are like the bar trap mechanism however, the actual death is suffocation. A lot of homeowners prefer this method of removal becuase it tends to be less...
What Are The Best Clam Snap Traps?
Here are my top picks if you want to try out a clam trap. Take a look at my pros and cons for clam traps as well.
The Pros of Clam Snap Traps
- Clam traps, while more expensive compared to most bar traps, are still inexpensive
- Clam traps produce a kill within a couple of minutes, not as quick as bar traps but much less ugly
- Clam traps are easy to maintain, they can be re-used by simply pinching the back and releasing the dead rodent in the garbage
- Clam Traps are not as hazardous around pets and children as the bite is not as sharp
The Cons of Clam Snap Traps
- Clam traps, while effective are still a daily maintenance issue
- Clam trap failure (rare) is normally due to rodent acceptance or placement
How To Bait Bar And Clam Traps?
Both the Clam and the Bar trap require “baiting” to attract the mouse to the station for the final coup de grace. The bait (food) should be what the mouse has been feeding on in your house, dog food, meat, cheese, seeds, nuts, peanut butter, etc.
A small amount of bait works better and prevents licking and nibbling which at times will not set off the trigger. For meat or cheese people have tried securing the bait with a piece of dental floss to prevent “stealing” the bait. Mice are crafty, and they are known to steal the bait without setting off the trigger.
Bar And Clam Trap Placement?
This is critical, and these traps should only be placed around areas of activity and close to the walls and structure where you are seeing feeding, droppings or rub marks.
The direction of the trap is also important. Make sure to place the baited end next to the wall so the rodent following the normal path against the wall will not have to detour around the trap.
How About Glue Boards To Kill Mice?
Glue boards have evolved to a point, where they are overused and became a focus of attention with many animal rights groups.
While we all would agree to the extent that mice can't co-exist with humans for many reasons (disease and food contamination), the method and how we eliminate them will still raise issues.
The method of operation is simple, find areas of activity bait the boards with seed or peanut butter and place into action out of the reach of children, pets or other non-target species.
Mice will attempt to address the food and become stuck on the board often with vocal and violent gestures as they struggle to free themselves. There have been cases of rodents chewing off limbs to free their bodies.
The Pros of Glue Board Snap Traps
- Very few other than excellent monitoring devices for insects
- Inexpensive and disposable
- Easy fit to difficult access areas
The Cons of Glue Board Traps
- Many feel this is an inhumane treatment which the evidence agrees with non-target attachment, kids, pets, birds are constantly getting stuck in this. If this happens, grab the WD-40 the reaction will free the capture
- Cannot be used as a stand-alone treatment. When glue boards are used, they are used in conjunction with other treatment options like traps or baits, never alone
And How About A Multi-Catch Traps To Kill Mice?
Most of them are used in commercial kitchens and industrial sites. They don't have to baited, the mice simply enter the device out of curiosity and a trap door shuts them inside. Other traps drop them the mouse into an area below or behind where they entered. Both methods can be opened for disposal, cleaned out and reused.
The Pros of Multi-Catch Traps
- Effective where other traps fail
- Good around food establishments where the use of rodenticides are not recommended
- Good where bait competition is a factor and mice are not attracted to the bait
The Cons of Multi-Catch Traps
- More expensive than the snap traps
- If not placed or managed correctly they become quickly ineffective
- Needs to be monitored and dumped every day to reduce odor
- Can be an eye sore around your house
What Are Some Of The Newer Mouse Traps On The Market?
Electronic Mouse Traps
While the idea sounds bizarre, like “Old Sparky” for the rodent world, a lot of these devices are hitting the market.
Basically, the station is powered by normal "AA" batteries, the rodent enters the station, which is baited as the other traps are, and the rodent gets electrocuted. These are reusable and safer than rodenticides.
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The Pros of Electric Traps
- No blood, no fuss no mess
- Fairly safe, low charge generated by low impact flashlight batteries
The Cons of Electric Traps
- Need more time to see how effective it is in infestations
- While it can be reused, it still must keep it cleaned after use
Trapper Hidden Kill Mouse Trap
As someone who's been in the industry for 20+ years, this trap has my attention.
The device is clean, effective, can be used in sensitive areas such as office buildings, a doctor’s office, homes or other areas where other traps can't be visible.
The mouse enters a pre-baited compartment, concealed on the bottom of the station. The entry slams shut, killing the rodent and trapping it inside.
The indicator on the station will show if the station recorded a false reading or if there is an actual mouse inside. At that point, the entire station with the dead mouse can be tossed.
When looks matter this station may be your best bet. This is a bit new on the market to pass judgement, but I cannot see it failing. The price point surprisingly low enough for the typical homeowner. I would say that this is not for industrial work on heavy infestations, but it does certainly has its niche.
So What Is The Best Mouse Trap?
At the end of the day it really depends on your situation, what type of infestation you have, and how sensitive the area is you are working with. A commercial kitchen with a mouse problem will have different needs than a typical home.
Truthfully, most people are probably better off with a cleaner approach...