How the cold, snowy winter affected the mice in and around your home

The record-breaking February weather could have a long-lasting impact on what could be creeping and crawling inside your home.

After coming across mouse droppings inside a cupboard at his Oakdale home, Bill Sheffield put down some bait.

Since then, he says there’s been no sign of any mice, but from experience, he understands that it may not stay that way.

“In the fall, they seem to come in hoards and then they’ll settle down when it gets bitter cold and, in the spring, they’ll come out again,” Sheffield said.

Mice breed year-round, but Oakdale pest control expert Rob Greer says that spring can be especially busy.

“People who didn’t have mice during the long cold stretches are starting to see them popping up,” said Greer.

Greer says the mild start to winter and record snowfall have helped mice more than it hindered them.

“Realistically, a lot of snow protects them,” Greer said. “When you have -13, -40 outside with about 3 feet of snow, they’re like little Eskimos living in their igloos underneath.

Mice are also finding their way indoors.

“Hiding from predators, looking for food, being as comfortable as possible,” Greer listed. “All of those are good motivators for them.”

Greer says he’s seen about 15 percent increase in demand for service this year. After his latest run-in, Sheffield is being proactive.

“We just try to keep our eyes open and look for signs,” Sheffield added.