In May 2019 I started de-mousing our foundation.  I got as far as doing the right side of the stoop and part of the front wall of the house while Darwin helped:

i put up hardware cloth to keep mice away from our foundation        darwin enjoying a dirt bath in neighbor kathy's garden

In December 2019 I did the left side of the stoop:

i stapled hardware cloth to the left side of our front stoop        i placed rocks and bricks against the hardware cloth to discourage mice

But I got too cold to start the front, even though something had dug a hole.  As a temporary solution I stapled a piece of hardware cloth over the hole and laid a brick against it:

the mice dug a hole in the center of our front stoop        i stapled hardware cloth over the mouse hole in front of our stoop

In March I noticed something had dug a hole UNDER the brick [and presumably under the piece of hardware cloth]:

I don’t think it’s mice, I think it’s something bigger.  The ground was still too cold to dig up the front of the stoop to install the rest of the hardware cloth, so I let it go.

I ended up putting off this project until this month because I didn’t like how the hardware cloth looked.  Drab.  Uneven.  I knew I’d be tearing up what I’d already done and spray painting the wire before being able to continue.

On June 10th I finally got started.  I pulled the staples from the wire on the right side of the stoop, spray painted it off-white, and let it dry overnight:

       

       

On June 11th I trimmed it so it would all the be the same height [another thing I didn’t like about my original job], reattached it with my staple gun and filled the dirt back in:

       

So much nicer!  You don’t even notice it anymore:

Then I pulled the wire from the left side:

The foundation wood is a little rotted, but it won’t matter for right now.  It’ll still take a staple:

       

I spray painted the wire and let it dry overnight:

On June 12th I stapled it back to the left side of the stoop:

       

The front corner was tricky because of rocks under the dirt that were too big to dig up.  I had to cut the hardware cloth to match the incline:

       

Then filled in that side with dirt.  Much better:

       

By this point a new hole had appeared in front of the stoop beside the hardware cloth patch I’d installed last December:

I removed the patch, then dug out the front of the stoop so I could install hardware cloth along the whole length:

       

I measured and cut the pieces, then spray painted them:

       

On June 13th I stapled them to the front of the stoop, then filled it in with dirt:

       

At this point I decided to dig another hole along the left side of the stoop so we could finally bury our rats Killy & Winston.  We also spread General Bonker’s ashes in the same hole.  We covered them over and put granite blocks down with flowers on top:

       

Rest in peace Killy [who we lost last Septemer], Winston [who we lost April 3rd]:

winston and killy playing in the park, and dandelion        winston and killy snuggling in their rolly nest

And General Bonkers who we lost December 1st, 2017, and still miss every day:

bonkers begging in the bedroom        bonkers on pink leash

bonkers enjoying the outdoor cat enclosure / catio        bonkers with a bit of creamy broth cat food on his lips

The de-mousing the foundation project is now DONE!  I’m glad I painted the wire white, and cut it so it was all even.  It blends it very well to the front stoop and house:

       

Hopefully this will keep things from digging into the basement!

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4 Comments

  1. AnneV

    That’s quite a project, and realistically it’s probably going to be never ending. I think perhaps you should check the perimeters on the first of every months, so you can do an emergency patch when needed.
    Question – do you ever see signs of any animal or rodent, any size, in the cellar? Certainly, something’s intent on getting inside.
    Meanwhile, you’re doing a great job, and the spray painting really helps camouflage the hardware cloth.

    1. Nine Dark Moons

      we have mice in the basement (2 of which i have in a cage still) and something larger tried to dig it’s way into the foundation over the winter, but i don’t know what. i tried to catch it in a small (rat sized) have a heart and it busted the whole thing apart and escaped. something was nesting on jim’s car engine for the past month, and something lived inside my motorcycle all winter – both left rodent poo much larger than a mouse, but smaller than a rat. i have no idea…

  2. Hugh

    Nice job! It’s amazing how much work there is in stopping a few critters coming into the house. Here it’s critters coming into our cars. Again I read your blog and it wore me out so I took a nap. ❤️

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