Although they typically only weigh a half ounce, house mice can be a big nuisance. House mice can chew through packages to destroy food items and they may leave dirty droppings and footprints all over your kitchen counters. Commercial mousetraps are available, but many people consider them to be inhumane because they severely injure or kill mice. If you would like to solve your mouse problem without injuring any mice, consider building your own mousetraps to catch mice and release them far from your home.
Seal any cracks or openings large enough to admit mice and other pests into your home. If you do not eliminate the entrances mice use to get into your home you will be constantly setting traps. By sealing off the entrances first, you can ensure that no more mice will enter your home and you can trap those already in residence.
Store food in tightly sealed containers made from tough materials like plastic or ceramic. By preventing mice from gaining easy access to food, you will force them to venture out of hiding where they will be more likely to encounter your traps.
Build a humane mousetrap by sightly flattening an empty toilet paper tube. Position the tube so it is leaning about halfway out from a counter top and the opening is directly over an empty box, bucket or trash can.
Bait the suspended end of the tube with a small amount of peanut butter and place a dab of the bait on the counter in front of the tube opening. When the mouse enters the tube to eat the peanut butter its weight will send the tube toppling into the trash can where the mouse will not be able to climb out.
Cut the top off a 2-liter plastic soda bottle with a pair of heavy duty scissors to construct a mousetrap using a different design. Insert the cut-off top into the soda bottle upside down to form a funnel shape and fill the bottom half of the bottle with an inch of sand or gravel to weigh it down.
Place the soda bottle trap somewhere you have seen mice such as a countertop or pantry area and build a ramp up to the mouth of the bottle using stacked books. Rub olive oil around the mouth of the bottle and drop some bait, such as raisins or peanut butter, into the bottle. When the mouse comes over to the mouth of the bottle to investigate the bait, it will slip on the olive oil and become trapped inside the bottle.
Transfer your trapped mice into a cage or bucket to keep until you are able to release them. Choose an enclosure with steep, slick sides to prevent mice from climbing out or put a lid on the top. If you plan to keep mice for more than 24 hours before releasing them, provide adequate food and water to keep the mice from dehydrating.
Transport your trapped mice at least one mile away from your home for release. If possible, choose a location where the mice will be able to thrive such as a park or wildlife refuge. To release mice, you may either put on a pair of thick gloves and pick the mice up out of the cage to let them go or you may carefully tip the container over until it is lying on its side on the ground and let the mice run out.