- SHREW IDENTIFICATION AND BIOLOGY
- WHAT DO SHREWS EAT?
- SHREWS LOVE TO EAT MICE
- WHAT ABOUT THAT HORRIBLE SHREW ODOR?
- CAN A SHREW CAUSE PROPERTY DAMAGE?
- HOW TO PREVENT A SHREW INFESTATION
- PREDATOR URINE WILL HELP KEEP SHREWS OUT
- INSTALL AN OWL HOUSE FOR NATURAL SHREW CONTROL
- SEAL ENTRY POINTS OF HOME WITH COPPER WOOL
- SIMPLE SHREW KILL TRAP
- ELECTROCUTING SHREW TRAP
- BEST SHREW LIVE TRAP
- YOU MUST GET RID OF THAT NASTY SHREW ODOR!
- CONTACT US
Shrews are a small, mouse sized mammal which have long snouts, small eyes and a five clawed toe. It’s head is much more narrow than a rodents and they many times have dark tipped teeth. This is a mineral pigmentation which serves to protect tooth wear. Unlike rodents, shrews do not grow teeth that can stand to wear down. The commonly found house shrew lacks this pigmentation but other traits make it easy to identify.
Related articles: CHIPMUNKS MOLES PRAIRIE DOGS VOLES
SHREW IDENTIFICATION AND BIOLOGY ^
Shrews have cork screw shaped feces and like flying squirrels, will many times choose one or two locations which they readily use over and over as a kind of “bathroom”. Shrews are commonly mistaken for either mice or moles but are entirely different. There are similar qualities between mice and shrews but one could argue that shrews are more closer in relation to a mole.
Like moles, shrews are mostly insectivores and they have a ferocious appetite. This is due to their rapid metabolism which is similar to a moles. However, shrews are commonly mistaken for mice. This happens when shrews move into vacated nest sites that used to house mice. Since they will do the same with vacant mole burrows, shrews are commonly misidentified for both mice and moles. Watch this short video to see just what one looks like close up.
Shrews are found all over the world with over 30 species living in North America alone. They are among the worlds smallest mammals and can exist where it is very cold, rainy or arid. Furthermore, it has been hard to determine which species, if any, are regional or inclining or declining in population. This is due to the limited amount of research and data available. It is widely known that populations appear to be stable and cyclical. Since shrews can have 2-4 litters a year, they are not as prolific as rodents. However, their average life it longer and quite commonly exceeds two years in the wild. Most litters will have 2-10 young and it will take about one month for a female to birth the litter.
WHAT DO SHREWS EAT? ^
Shrews live primarily on insects. They will readily eat grasshoppers, wasps, crickets, snails and earthworms. However, they will also eat mice, small birds, snakes and slugs. Shrews will also feed on seeds around bird feeders, eggs in bird houses and all kinds of flowers, fruits, vegetables and plant bulbs. This type of feeding is why most people do not like them around the home. Since they have a fast metabolism, shrews will generally feed every few hours and don’t ever rest. Like moles, they can consume their body weight 2 or more times every day! This makes them a menace in and around homes.
Though shrews have a great sense of smell, they have poor vision. Certain species actually use echo location – more commonly used by bats – to navigate the terrain in which they live. Their sense of smell is probably what they use the most to move throughout their territory. Shrews have pungent smelling glands which are used to mark these territories as well as set up social order regarding colonies, courting and reproduction. In fact, this odor is another reason why shrews are not a welcome guest in the home.
Shrews love fish. In fact hatcheries are among their favorite places to feed as are private fish ponds, crayfish farms and just about any small body of water which harbors fish or other marine life. Around the home, shrews will find or create living areas close to bird feeders, pets and gardens. Since they will eat nuts, pet food and just about any type of fruit or vegetable, shrews can find plenty of food supplies around the average home. If the supply of food dwindles, they will forage into homes and start to pilfer pantries and other food storage areas.
SHREWS LOVE TO EAT MICE ^
Shrews will commonly follow mouse trails looking for a meal. Once inside the home, shrews will prey upon the mice they find and then live where the mice once lived. In a short period of time, their odor will become quite apparent. And even though shrews can navigate during the night, they are not truly nocturnal. Shrews will readily feed during the day and basically will become active as their dietary needs demand going about to feed whenever the local environment will best provide a meal.
WHAT ABOUT THAT HORRIBLE SHREW ODOR? ^
Shrews can be a pest to people many ways. As explained above, once inside the home, shrews will leave a strong pungent odor where they are active. It is quite easy to smell this outside in the yard too and it is NASTY! This smell is mostly used the same way a skunk uses it; to ward off would be predators.
People commonly ask what does a shrew smell like and the best way to describe it is to say it smells like skunk. Basically it’s a strong, pungent smell that comes from their anal glands. Shrews use this smell to mark territory, create scent trails (used to navigate into homes, around yards, etc.) communicate with other shrews and as a defense mechanism. Much like skunk smell, since it’s very strong, many animals will not eat a shrew once this foul smell is detected.
CAN A SHREW CAUSE PROPERTY DAMAGE? ^
Since Shrews like to feed on small birds and eggs – including both wild birds nesting as well as chicken eggs – they can be quite damaging to local bird populations. Many farmers experience a lot of damage which is hard to imagine something as small as a shrew could have caused. However, their rapid metabolism will cause them to feed more like an animal 3-5 times as large.
DO SHREWS BITE? ^
Shrews will bite and the Red toothed shrew is poisonous. This poison is used to render their food motionless while they eat their prey alive but if you try to handle a shrew, there is a good chance you’ll get bit. Remember, shrews have sharp piercing teeth which deliver their venom precisely and these teeth have been known to injure people so avoid handling them. Their venom is not fatal but it will cause a sore that will linger for many days.
HOW TO PREVENT A SHREW INFESTATION
If you think you have shrews active around the yard and don’t want them getting into your home, there are some things you can do.
PREDATOR URINE WILL HELP KEEP SHREWS OUT ^
First, you can try setting out some repellent. COYOTE URINE placed along your property border may keep them from entering. Coyote are natural predators of shrews and are drawn to the pungent smell and odor where shrews are active. Shrews know the distinctive odor of these predators and will tend to avoid areas where they think coyote may be living or feeding. Make urine placements around your property, about every 10 feet, setting out 1-2 oz at any one location. Renew once every 30-60 days. Trace amounts can be effective so even if you don’t smell it, shrews will.
If you reside in regions that experience a lot of rainfall, consider making protecting your placements with LIQUID GUARDS. These protective containers will enable urine to last at least 2-3 months per application. Space them 10 feet apart; they can hold up to 3 oz of urine making them well suited for discreet applications in the landscape
For even more discretion, use CAPSULE GUARDS. These are small plastic vials you’ll fill with urine and place out by hanging them on shrubs or other low ground cover. Capsule guards will slowly release the odor giving you a good 2-3 months of protection. Each capsule can hold around .5 oz of urine and placements should be 2-4 feet apart.
INSTALL AN OWL HOUSE FOR NATURAL SHREW CONTROL
Another natural way to keep shrew populations in check is to help promote the welfare of local owls. These magnificent birds of prey are one of the few which will readily feed on shrews. Due to the shrews pungent odor, many prey animals and birds will ignore them. However, owls don’t seem to mind. Set out a BARN OWL house if you have some in your region. Such houses, when properly made and installed, have high occupancy rates. Once you have either species living in your offering, they will undoubtedly give something back to you by feeding on unwanted shrews, mice and rats. Owls are mostly nocturnal and cover a large area so try to make your house placement where it is dark and near the woods. This will insure they are both comfortable and able to find enough food for themselves and any offspring should they reproduce.
We have one proven design that come in Plywood.
It also comes built with Cedar.
SEAL ENTRY POINTS OF HOME WITH COPPER WOOL ^
Lastly, take some time to make sure your home is adequately rodent proof. Shrews, like mice and rats, are good climbers and will access homes from both low and high points. If you have shrew activity around your home, it is only a matter of time before some get inside if you have easy access points. Such locations are usually found where pipes enter the home, poorly sealed windows or doors as well as misfitted vents.
Take some time to seal all these areas and use materials that won’t break down easily. COPPER WOOL is a great way to quickly and effectively seal up such holes, cracks, gaps and voids. It’s easy to work with and won’t rot away like regular steel wool. Its made from copper so it will last a lifetime and SHREWS WILL NOT CHEW THROUGH IT.
WARNING: DO NOT SEAL ENTRY HOLES IF SHREWS ARE ALREADY IN THE HOME!! Once you have a local infestation, don’t do any closure till the problem is under control and no activity is detected present. Getting rid of shrews will take 1-2 weeks on average but ultimately will depend on just how many shrews are presently active and how many trapping devices you employ. Remember, the more traps installed, the faster you will be able to get the problem under control. However, we cannot over emphasize how important it is to NEVER seal holes until all activity has ceased. The main reason is simple: by knowing where they have been active you can then watch and monitor such locations as well as use them for making trap sets. In other words, holes and routes of entry are good to know and will prove to be helpful in getting any local population under control.
SIMPLE SHREW KILL TRAP ^
There are several styles of traps which work on shrews. You will have to decide which type to use; the choice will generally include a kill or live trap.
The first is the common Mouse Trap. However, don’t use any which are old or employ the metal trigger design. You will get much better results with the EXPANDED TRIGGER MOUSE TRAP. Place these along any wall, behind appliances or anywhere you are finding evidence of activity.
The most important thing to realize when using this type of trap is that you must make a set using a lure or bait that will be readily accepted by the local shrew population (see below for which bait to use).
In general, the more traps you employ the better. We recommend at least 6 traps but 20 is even better.
BEST BAIT FOR ALL SHREW TRAPS ^
Since shrews will feed on just about anything, it really helps when you are able to match the bait used in the trap to what the shrews are already finding in or around your property. There are several choices that could work and if you are not sure which to try, get as many as possible and use them all. This will always get results.
If you are finding fruits or vegetables in the garden or kitchen being attacked, use our LOGANBERRY PASTE. Shrews generally cannot ignore this fragrant attractant and can’t resist any offering of 1/2 teaspoon no matter where you place it.
If you have a lot of nuts on the property from trees or bird feeders, PECAN PASTE would be a better option.This stable, highly concentrated nut based paste will get them interested and allow them to find the trap from afar.
Since shrews like insects, another good option is our GRUB LURE. Remember, both insects and nuts are on the short “favorite list” for any shrews menu so either attractant will get good results if you’re not sure what they’re eating.
HOW TO BEST BAIT A SHREW TRAP ^
When using Expanded Trigger Mouse Traps, there are two things you need to accomplish for successful trapping.
First, use as many traps as possible. Though setting out 6 might seem like a lot, the use of 12-20 would even be better. The placement of these traps should be where you have either found holes, trails, damaged food in cabinets or pantries, droppings or where shrews have been seen or left a scent trail. Which ever lure you end up using, the next key is to use enough of it on the trap. To insure you do, you must coat the entire square trigger of the trap with the lure. Use your finger or cotton swab to smear the chosen lure all around the trigger of the trap making sure to get the bottom side of it covered.
Next, smear some underneath the trigger directly onto the wood of the trap. This will cause the wood to soak up the scent of the lure being used and make it that much more irresistible to any passing shrew. Once baited, make sets along walls and against solid objects. Remember, shrews don’t see well and need to have something solid along any trail or pathway they follow. This could be behind a couch, refrigerator, stove, back side of a cabinet or pantry, along a basement or garage wall, etc.
Lastly, make sure the trigger side of the trap is closest to the wall and not the side of the trap. In other words, make the set with the trigger up against the wall so no matter which side the shrew may approach from, it will encounter the trigger first and not the jaws of the trap. This will enable the trap to do it’s job even if the shrew just walks right in without seeing where it is walking. You won’t get the same results if you have the trap laid sideways along the wall so make sure this set is utilized. Be sure to inspect your traps at least once a day but not more then twice a day as this could get any local animals a little shy.
ELECTROCUTING SHREW TRAP ^
The second type of kill trap that works well for shrews is the ELECTRIC ZAPPER. These box like traps are very effective because they have wide open entrances which are comfortable for shrews to enter. Bait is placed at the back of the trap and in order for the shrew to reach the bait, it will have to step on the mid section of the device. Make sure you use one of the lures listed above and place a teaspoonful at the back of the device WITH THE DEVICE TURNED OFF AND THE BATTERIES OUT. This insures you won’t get “stung” by accidentally grounding yourself out.
Next, place a dab or two at the entrance way, around the edges, to help funnel target animals inside. Shrews that enter will meet their demise when they get to the mid section of the trap. It is at this point where a “ground out” pad will cause the trap to complete its circuit which is powered by batteries. When the circuit is complete, there is a small electric charge which will power through whatever causes the ground out. This charge is enough to kill mice, shrews and rats but can’t hurt animals which weigh 10 pounds or more.
Grounded animals will receive enough juice to die quickly and painlessly. Each trap has a light on top for easy monitoring so you will know when it is on and when it has gone off. Shrews which are killed in the trap will remain inside and will easily slide out for fast and easy removal. All you have to do next is turn the unit back off and back on again for reset. Electrocuting Devices are quick, easy and very effective for shrew control.
For outside use, protect your zapper with a TRAP TUBE. Designed to shield the sensitive electrical components of the zapper from the rain, Trap Tubes come in two colors so they will help camouflage your set. Basically the Zapper will fit inside comfortably and the tube can be set in green, lush areas well hidden using a green tube. For mulch areas with pine straw or wood chips, the brown tube will blend right in.
BEST SHREW LIVE TRAP ^
If you prefer not to kill any shrews, you can live trap existing populations. About the same size as the Electrocution Device, the LT3310 will last many years and is easy to deploy. Just set it where activity has been found and place any of the bait listed above in the back of the trap, behind the trip pad. Be sue to place small dabs at the entrance to help get the shrews headed inside.
Once trapped, you can either destroy or relocate the animal. Be sure to take any you intend on releasing at least one mile from your property to ensure they won’t return. If you release them on a wooded lot, there will surely be enough food for them to survive.
Live trapping is easy and can be done both inside and outside. Use the same locations for making a set as you would if you were using one of the kill traps listed above. Such areas should be along walls, in basements, in crawl spaces, behind appliances or along the foundation wall outside. Remember that like kill traps, the more you set out the faster you will be able to round up all the shrews which are active. In other words, trapping with just one trap will get you results but could take several weeks to remove all which are around your home and property. 2-3 traps working at the same time will provide much faster results as well as help to identify good locations for making sets. If you have 2-3 traps working at the same time and only one seems to be catching shrews, be sure to move the others close to the one which is working best. Pathways which are identified as being active should be targeted and sets should focus around them if you want to get fast results.
YOU MUST GET RID OF THAT NASTY SHREW ODOR! ^
Once you start removing shrews, you can then seal entry holes to ensure they won’t get back inside. Do this only after you are able to note at least a two week period with no activity in the home. At that point it will be safe to seal entry points. Use the Copper Steel Wool described above for small holes along with some caulk and hardware cloth where applicable.
Part of the exclusion process will be to deactivate their scent trails. Like many animals and insects, shrews leave very distinct odor trails where they travel. When you remove (trap out) the current population, the shrew scents on and around your home can remain active for 1-2 years. This odor is a kind of “calling card” which will attract more shrews to the scent trails. Once they arrive and start following the scent, they’ll want to get inside the home and your problem can start all over again.
Additionally, even if you did successfully close up all routes of entry, the lingering scent trail will be quite powerful many times serving as a “pot of gold” to any inquiring shrew. And this pot of gold will be so desirable that the new shrews will at least find your yard to use for nests. This will lead to more scent, pheromone and “nasty” shrew odors which in turn will lead to more shrews! Just one female shrew in heat can attract male shrews for years!
To prevent this from happening, you’ll need to spray the perimeter of the home, tunnels, entrances, mounds, nests and basically anywhere you saw shrews or can smell them with NNZ. This odor neutralizing enzymatic acting product will neutralize the organic scent left by shrews so there will be no clue a shrew ever visited your home.
Be sure to spray the entire foundation going up the sides of the home a good 4-6 feet as well as spraying the ground out from the foundation where ever needed. Expect to use 3-5 gallons of mixed material for this treatment. Though one application will usually do the job, a second treatment will not hurt. NNz can be safely applied over grass, shrubs, etc. and won’t hurt plants or wildlife. It will work instantly too so odors will be gone within hours.
Add 8 oz per gallon of water and expect to get 400-800 sq/ft of coverage per mixed gallon.
NNz can be applied using any standard PUMP SPRAYER.
GET RID OF SHREW ODOR IN THE HOME TOO! ^
Odors left inside the home need to be neutralized too. Besides being able to attract more shrews to the structure, shrew odor can be offensive. If you have areas that need disinfection due to the extreme pungent odor left by shrews, spray with the NNz or wash down the area with a rag, sponge or mop.
Shrews are a hardy and persistent pest once they establish themselves on your property. If you have a natural landscape which is rich with nuts, seed, insects and wildlife, chances are high that shrews will like to live there as well. Once they move into the neighborhood, their feeding habits will have an immediate impact on all the local animals. If left unchecked, they will commonly move inside any home. Keep them out by doing extensive closure around the structure sealing off any entrance holes you find around pipes, windows, doorways, etc. Reduce infestations using either kill traps or live traps along with some of the special baits available. Deodorize scent trails and nest sites to ensure other shrews won’t find your home quite as easily.
CONTACT US ^
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Thanks for the helpful info. I have had mice between my floors chewing the electric wiring and once caused a small fire. I have been desperate to get rid of them. The other night one of my cats caught 2 baby shrews. I’m glad to hear the mice are probably gone and wouldn’t mind if the shrews stayed, unless they also chewed wires. Do they?
But, now I’ve learned about the odor…. Well, guess I have to get rid of the shrews now. I wondered why my mice friends in my garage and workshop were disappearing too!
Tech Support says
Sorry to let you know but yes, shrews will chew wires. Like most animals in this size range, they gnaw and chew things as a way to mark territory as well as keep their teeth ground down, sharp and in good working condition. In fact this one common trait amongst all small mammals like squirrels, chipmunks, rats, mice, voles, shrews, moles etc. is the main reason why we generally don’t want them living in our houses. Add to this the fact that they transmit disease, leave feces throughout our living spaces and in general, erode and damage our homes, it’s no wonder most people want them out as soon as their spotted.
On top of the above listed concerns, shrews will no doubt add their unique odor once they get established. Mostly used for marking territory, their scent is quite different from rats and mice. Not nearly as much like feces or urine but pungent and distinct all the same. We’ve found the Odor Destroyer to be a good choice for odor control if you find their scent appearing in living spaces; use it in attic and wall spaces if you have a problem somewhere hidden that won’t go away.
Odor Destroyer: https://bugspray.com/sanitizer/liquid/odor-destroyer
We have caught 8 shrews down stairs and found the hole by the door where they chewed through but everywhere else is concrete. The down stairs is built into the ground. We have recently found two more and don’t know how they are getting in. Any suggestions?
Tech Support says
@Ginny: You need to apply some of the N-100 we talk about at the end of our article above. Shrews rely on scent as a way to mark their trails. These scent trails will linger years long after you remove the active population. The problem is the lingering odor will attract outside shrews to your home and even though you’ve sealed some entry points, they’ll do whatever they can to get back inside because to them, there is a good reason to get there. And if you had a female shrew in heat inside the home, male shrews will stop at nothing to get inside because her scent will be very strong to them.
To get rid of these odors, spray down the outside ground and foundation of the home with the N-100 as explained above and this will remove their old scent. It’s the only product we’ve seen that can effectively neutralize their scent. Wash down the basement with this mixture as well. Once de sanitized, there will be little if any infiltration from new shrews.
WHAT DOES SHREW ODOR SMELL LIKE? HOW DO I KNOW THE SMELL IS FROM SHREWS, OR A CAT THAT HAS SPRAYED? MY HUSBAND AND I HAVE BEEN KILLING SHREWS ALL NIGHT OUTSIDE OUR HOME, BUT I’M NOT SURE IF THERE IS A SMELL I SHOULD BE AWARE OF. ALSO, I HAVE THREE CATS, AND ONE OF THEM APPEARS TO BE HUNTING WHAT WE THOUGHT WERE MICE OUTSIDE. THEY ARE INDOOR CATS, BUT ARE ALLOWED TO GO OUTSIDE WHEN WE ARE WITH THEM. MY QUESTION TO YOU IS WILL MY CAT GET BITTEN BY THE SHREW AND COULD SHE CATCH A DISEASE FROM THEM WHETHER BITTEN OR NOT? SHE DOES NOT KILL THE SHREW OR MICE, BUT RATHER PLAYS WITH THEM UNTIL THEY CANNOT PLAY ANY LONGER. THANKS FOR YOUR ANSWER. I LOOK FORWARD TO HEARING FROM YOU. SINCERELY, CINDY
Tech Support says
As explained in our article, shrews have a smell that’s similar to skunk. Released from anal glands, this smell is used to mark territory and fend off would be predators.
Additionally, shrews bite. Many species of shrews can deliver a toxic venom with this bite so I advise you to not let any pet (or human) play with shrews. Though not fatal, it will leave a nasty sore and in some cases make the victim feel sick for a day or two.
Am I correct that NO POISON PELLETS will kill shrews? The pellets that kill mice do not work on shrews? Sounds like traps are the best bet?
Thanks. I’m a novice at this.
Tech Support says
Shrews are very different animals compared to mice and rats and in general, rodenticides won’t work on them. Additionally, there are no rodenticides or “baits” labeled for shrews anyway and though they might be tricked into eating some type of poison, in most cases the net result will be negligible. Yeah, you might end up killing 1-2 but in the end, so many will persist you’ll end up using one of the trapping methods listed above to get your problem resolved.
At this time I suggest you decide between a kill trap or a live trap and start there. Trapping definitely works and over time can be used to manage any type of shrew infestation.
We have seen what we think is a mouse in our home, but its not eating any food .. is it possible that it could be a shrew rather then a mouse. We are packing to move so we are bringing in lots of boxes collected from local business’s. We think thats how they got in. We are seeing evidence of droppings in closets, drawers and cabinets, but its not eating anything at all. How can we identify if the droppings are mouse or shrew droppings?
Tech Support says
No easy way to tell the difference but I have to ask what would it matter? In every case when customers call with this kind of problem, they want the animal gone. And since the methods for removing it will be the same for either animal, it won’t matter if they turn out to be mice or shrews.
So at this time I would say to place out some LT3310 traps baited with mixed seed and Pecan Paste. If you set out 2-3 of these traps around the home where you’re finding droppings, you’ll be able to catch either mice or shrews and in the end, solve the problem before it gets worse.
Here are links to these items in our cart. Please show your support for our business by purchasing the items we recommend from the links provided. Remember, this is the only way we can stay around and keep this valuable web site up and running. Thanks for your business!
Mixed Seed: https://bugspray.com/traps/lure/mixed-seed
Pecan Paste: https://bugspray.com/traps/lure/pecan-paste
I have had shrew and mouse problems in my yard for a while. There was a time I caught 8-10 during the season; other times it might be 1-2. It has been a while since the population is under control. Lately I notice they are back with signs of little holes. My questions is will a mouse trap be the only effective tool? It is hard to place traps on an uneven slope. I have tried several ways, its just not effective. 2nd question, should I use fox urine in the holes after trapping a certain amount of them? Or should I use just it around the house for prevention since population is ongoing for years? When should I apply urine directly into the holes? Any suggestions will be extremely helpful.
Tech Support says
Using mouse traps outside in and around shrew borrows can be tough. Especially since their tunnels can be at odd angles and in some cases, not quite large enough to fit a trap comfortably. Additionally, there’s no easy to way to tell which holes are active, etc.
But one sure way to get voles, shrews, deer mice and any other small rodent is to set out a Rat Zapper inside a Rat Nest. The Rat Nest will protect the Zapper from the weather. These units are easy to use and very effective once you know what they want to eat.
Rat Zapper: https://bugspray.com/traps/electric/rat-zap-ultra
Rat Zapper Nest: https://bugspray.com/traps/electric/rats-nest
So before you set them out, it would be wise to identify something they’re eating. This way you can use the same bait for the Zapper. No doubt bird seed can work. But it might turn out to be something else like pet food or a local nut falling from a tree in your yard.
And to figure out what it might be, simply set some out bird food or some nuts alongside any of the holes you see. Do this just before sunset and see if your offering is eaten overnight or sometime the next day. And once you see some has been taken, you’ll know that location can be used for placing a Zapper.
Now if you’re not sure what they might be eating, get some of our Loganberry Paste. This stuff works great on all small animals meaning they can’t resist it.
Loganberry Paste: https://bugspray.com/traps/lure/loganberry-paste
Lastly, don’t use any Fox or Coyote urine as repellent until you know they’re gone. And to be sure they’re gone, you’ll need to wait at least 2 weeks without seeing any activity. Once that happens, you can place out urine around the property borders and down their holes. Do this every 2 months and they’ll stay away for good.
Red Fox Urine: https://bugspray.com/repellents/liquid/red-fox-urine
Coyote Urine: https://bugspray.com/repellents/liquid/coyote-urine
I have Ehrlich coming in and they set traps inside and out and caught what they said by my description sounds like a shrew. The shrew left its remains all over my pans and dishes. What can I use to effectively sanitize the dishes and the shelves (covered with wipable Contact type paper)
Tech Support says
The dishes can be washed but you’ll want to empty the cabinet and clean with Rough and Ready seen here:
Rough’n Ready: https://bugspray.com/sanitizer/liquid/rough-and-ready
Let it dry for at least 2 hours and then wipe down or spray with Odor Neutralizer.
Odor Destroyer: https://bugspray.com/sanitizer/liquid/odor-destroyer
You would also be wise to spray the entire perimeter of the home. Shrews leave pungent “pheromones” where active and these are typically left as markers at entrance points. This enables them to find their way inside but will also lead to others directly to your home. To eliminate more coming inside, spray the foundation and any potential entry way with the Odor Destroyer. It will remove the smell and in turn, prevent new shrews from finding your home and getting inside.
Do shrews store food? I find bird food from outside inside my house.
Tech Support says
They do. Shrews and Voles commonly do this; mice can too.
Our best advise is to get one of our LT3310 traps and using the seed for bait, trap out whatever this critter is. Once you go 2 weeks without seeing new food piles or finding any other new evidence, set out some of our sound repellers around the home inside or outside where they might be entering. This will keep them out for good.
Sound Repeller: https://bugspray.com/repellents/sound/usd-animal-repeller-wireless-remote-led.html
PS: Are you signed up for our informative twice a month Pest Report Newsletter? More info here: http://bugspray.com/bugspray_pest_report.html
Terry R says
We have found 1 small and 1 very very large hole chewed through the back of our cupboards and thought it was mice or rats and then had an exterminator come out and set poison traps. Then we noticed a horrible smell that seemed to be coming from inside the walls of the basement so we thought the rat died in the walls!
Then a week or so with catching nothing in the traps and new bait lures set to make sure we got them all out before sealing up the house we are now getting mice in the traps and found a shrew running inside the attached garage last night and found dead this morning (not by a trap). So now we’re wondering if it was a shew and not a dead rat in the walls? And will they chew big holes through the drywall to get into cupboards?
Tech Support says
If you read through our article above, you’ll learn that shrews routinely prey on mice. So having mice will often lead to having shrews. As for the smell in the home; its not possible for us to tell you if its from the shrew or the rodents (mice). What we do know is you need to be careful about how you handle things regarding the activity and sealing of the home.
So if you review our mouse control article, you’ll see we point out its very important to not mess with animal trails or holes until all current activity ends. And to end the activity, you should use a combination of kill traps and live traps like the ones listed above. Rodenticide can lead to animals dying in hidden areas so we do not recommend them for residential use.
A really great option is the LT3310 Live Trap. It works well for rats, chipmunks, flying squirrels, mice, shrews and more. And animals won’t get skittish of them like they can with kill traps. This covered in great detail in our article here:
Here is a direct link to the trap:
So for now, be sure to have plenty of traps in place around the home. And try to remove droppings daily by looking for them every morning and/or evening. This way if you spot anything new, you can tell quickly there are still animals around needing to be removed.
Now once you go at least 2 weeks with no activity, you can consider doing cleanup and sealing. But as our mouse control and shrew article above discuss, the scent left by these animals will surely lead to new animals finding your home. To prevent this from happening, you’ll want to apply NNz to all walls, voids, baseboards and the exterior of the home before you seal anything. Removing the odor from these animals will ensure you don’t have ongoing problems.
Lastly, once the home has been “descented” and sealed, install some of our Sound Repellers. If not inside, around the homes exterior. This will ensure no animals want to come around. Personally I am using a few in my attics to keep out flying squirrels, rats and voles which like to move in during our cold season. I also have a few around the home’s exterior to ensure none get close. More on this process can be found in our article here:
How to Stop Rodents from Finding your Home: https://bugspray.com/eliminate-animal-odor-stop-rodents-returning.html
PS: Are you signed up for our informative twice a month Pest Report Newsletter? More info here: https://bugspray.com/bugspray_pest_report.html
How high can shrews climb? I have a brick house, and the shutters on the front second story are curved at the top and I’m wondering if they’re getting in by climbing the wall and going under the shutters. This probably sounds crazy, but every now and then I hear these scratching noises REALLY LOUD and the one shutter is right behind my headboard. It’s usually shortly after that when I start hearing a shrew running around the attic. Eventually they someone get downstairs into my kitchen and seem to be coming from under the dishwasher.
My exterminator has caught 2 using the sticky boards (one under the dishwasher, one in the attic). I thought that was it and purchased the NNZ to get rid of the smell. Before it arrived, more scratching.
Help! I get that you need to get rid of them before you can use the NNZ to get rid of the smell. But if the smell also attracts them, how do I get rid of them long enough?
Tech Support says
Shrews, roof rats, mice, voles and a few other small rodents can all climb brick and gain access to any home as you’ve described. At this point, I suggest you continue to have glueboards in play but also get some LT3310 traps as they can really help.
Now once you go 2 weeks without any noise, you can apply the NNz and I also suggest you install some of our Sound Repellers in the attic. They will really help.
More on how to keep small rodents from getting inside which will cover your problem for sure can be read about here:
How To Stop Invading Rodents: https://bugspray.com/eliminate-animal-odor-stop-rodents-returning.html
And the trap you should get is this one:
Could you please provide a link for the Sound Repellers?
Tech Support says
Here you go:
Sound Repeller: https://bugspray.com/repellents/sound/usd-animal-repeller-wireless-remote-led.html
Alyssa Conaway says
One more question—is it safe to spray the NNZ under and around appliances? They were mostly coming into my kitchen from under the dishwasher and oven, but because those get hot I’m not sure if it’s safe to spray there.
Tech Support says
Its absolutely okay to spray under there. Remember, you mostly spraying water and the material itself is not flammable so when mixed with water, not anything that can “burn”. Also remember you can mop with it, use it on sponges, papwer towels or brush it onto surfaces. And there is no need to be excessive.
Now if you have a lot of “hard to reach” voids like in a crawl space or attic, the fogging machine can really be helpful as it disperses the product quickly but not too heavily. And it covers everything so you don’t miss anything.
Bugspray Fogger: https://bugspray.com/equipment/foggers/bugspray-mist-fogger.html