what critter stores peanuts?


Hello, I am ready to order a trap from you and I want to be sure that I am ordering the right one. We have a critter in our laundry room who steals peanuts at night and stores a cache of them under towels, in between clothes and inside an open borax box. I cannot see evidence of any feces. I have tried to catch it with an 18″ x 6″ X6″ Little Giant Live Trap designed for chipmunks, rats, red and flying squirrels. Our dryer vent door is open about 1 inch on the outside brick wall. Your website looks professional. What kind of animal has these kinds of habits?

Good question. Rats – even juveniles – are messy and no doubt if you had them hoarding the nuts, there would be droppings all around the home. Flying squirrels won’t roam much from any point of entry – especially inside living areas of any home so they too can be ruled out.

Rat Article: http://www.roof-rat-control.com/rat-control

Flying Squirrels: http://www.bugspray.com/catalog/products/page359.html

Chipmunks and squirrels are just too afraid of living areas where people are active too so I’m sure it’s not one of them.

Chipmunks: http://www.bugspray.com/articles98/chipmunks.html

Squirrel Article:  http://www.bugspray.com/article/squirrels.html

So what does that leave us? My guess is either mice or shrews.

Some species of mice like to hoard. Deer mice, for example, will cover large areas compared to most mice and they tend to limit their messes so it can be hard to find any droppings. Personally I’ve found them in my attic and kitchen on two occasions and have trapped a total of 4. But even with all that “action”, I was only able to find 2-3 droppings.

Mice: http://www.bugspray.com/mice.html

But the ultimate hoarder is no doubt the shrew. They typically do not leave any droppings, they will definitely cover large areas inside the home, they thrive on nuts during the cold months of the year and they can be tough to isolate. That being said, it sounds like you have at least two great locations to start with for setting a trap.

The first would be by the dryer vent. Since this varmint likes peanuts, I suggest you set out 5 fresh peanuts by the vent which has the “hole” that might be allowing something to enter your home. This could be the main entry way so don’t close this hole till you’ve trapped out the critter that’s coming inside. This way you won’t force it to find another entry way which it will do if you interfere. For this reason it’s important to do nothing that might complicate the trapping process so leave everything as is for now.

Next, set out another pile of 5 peanuts anywhere you’ve found “hoards” of food in the past. This might be where you keep the towels or clothes where the nuts have been found before.

Once in place, these locations will serve as “feeder stations” and any “station” which gets depleted will mean this critter is coming by the spot. So watch them by checking each daily and once you find any spot where the peanuts are disappearing, you’ll have found a spot where you can set a trap.

Next, get 2-3 of our LT3310 traps. This is a solid trap (not wire) and will catch anything from a mouse to a small squirrel. It’s a great choice for small creatures since they tend to be comfortable entering it compared to traps made of wire. You see, most any small animal is not afraid to enter something that resembles a tunnel and because this trap is of solid design, small creatures typically are very comfortable walking inside.

LT3310:  http://www.bugspraycart.com/traps/cage/live-trap-3-x-3-x-10

Now by the time your order trap arrives, I’m sure one of the locations where you’ve placed out peanuts will have had activity. And any that do would be where you’ll then set this trap out using peanuts as the bait. Using this approach should enable you to catch this critter but don’t be ready to call the fight won after you catch just one! You must go at least 2 weeks with no activity or nothing trapped before you proceed with any kind of hole closure or cleanup. Good luck!

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December 4, 2012

Karin @ 10:00 am #


Thank you! What a great response. I have ordered the trap. I will let you know what happens. By the way, I live in southwestern Ontario near Toronto, if that makes any difference. I have seen shrews here so your answer makes sense.

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