If mice are leaving outside, then they do not hibernate. However, certain species such as deer mice become dormant expense the entire winter sleeping. These pests would wake up from their deep slumber only to get food. This is how they survive the cold time of year without the need for complete hibernation.
House mice are not known to hibernate during winter. They usually take this time to deliver food head start so they have food during call season. This means that these rodents will force themselves to get into crosspieces just to get food.
Where else can they find food aside from the wild but in your home? This is the main reason why mice infestations are more likely to happen in the winter than in the warmer months.
How Do Mice Survive the Winter?
So how do mice and other rodents survive the winter season? When the temperatures drop, rodents do different things to keep themselves living despite the cold weather. These are the following:
One of the things pet rodents do such as field mice is, they build their nest out of various materials. The nest of a field mouse is usually cup-shaped and is made of any soft material they can find around their chosen spot. Most of the time, the nest would look like clumps of paper, grass, insulation, fabric, and dust.
They used these nests not only as a shelter but also their cover and a place for raising their young. Winter is when field mice are creating their nest for extra warmth and would build these in warm areas.
Usually, they will fill out the nest in a burrow in an existing structure or worse, in your home. Their search for possible nesting materials may also be the reason why these certain species of mice are drawn closer to your home.
They will pull any loose insulation or fabric materials from vulnerable areas they can find in your house. If ever they find an entry point while scavenging materials, they will most likely take it. They might even find a suitable spot the builder nest inside your home.
Burrowing all year round is what deer mice do. Their burrows are usually simple with one entrance and enough space to fit a single mouse. These burrows are usually dug into or under existing structures like rocks or tree stumps.
Mice living in burrows can stay there even during winters however they cannot dig when the ground is frozen. If their burrows are deep enough, it will be warm enough for them to survive freezing temperatures.
Burrowing mice can only become a problem if they start inadvertently digging into your house. This is more likely to happen then you expect. They will most likely borrow under your porch or deck.
While burrowing, they might find a crack in the foundation or any narrow openings in the baseboard or frame. In case they do, they will follow the heat from your home and may even chew through the insulation just to get inside.
There are my species like the Brown mice that are known as climbers. Most of the year, they are living in tree hollows. They usually use their ability to climb to enter any warm areas.
Aside from trees, they can also climb and enter attics, vent systems, and roof. They would climb these areas to avoid snow and gain access to warm areas. Also, they can access downspouts, drainpipes, vines, and even ragged siding.
Sneak Inside Your Home
Unfortunately, house mice are the only species that can use your home as a place to stay during the winter. Though filled mice infestations are rarer than house mice infestations, they still happen especially during the cold weather.
Most of the time field mice infestations happen when this species is trying any of the three survival techniques mentioned above. At first, field mice would infest detached buildings, sheds, or barns and then eventually move in your home.
They will find any tiny holes or gaps and squeeze through to get in. To achieve effective rodent control, it is highly recommended that you keep all food items including pet food stored carefully to avoid attracting these pests.
Since any mice species will forage food to survive the winter, you should practice pest control methods that will keep them away from your home. This will help you prevent a mice infestation during the winter season.