Mice, Questions about D-Con and Traps

Seems that every time around the first cold snap (Wisconsin) I have problems with mice in the house. I presume they find a way into the house to escape the cold. I'll be sitting there watching TV and see the dreaded gray streak go across the floor out of the corner of my eye. I then track them down, moving furniture, and then used a tennis racket and/or a broom and caught and killed a couple of them.
I now know I've got mice in the house so I buy a half dozen traps, bait them with peanut butter or cheese and put them in likely mouse traffic areas, like in the utility room under the stairs and behind appliances. I'd catch one or two more mice using this method. For the rest of the fall and winter, I don't see any mice or find any droppings. Then when it warms up next spring, I'll see a mouse or two running across the floor. It doesn't make sense for them to be coming into the house if it's warming up outside, does it? Now I'm thinking they were living here all winter and decided they wanted to go out. I go through the same process with catching and killing what I see and also setting traps. I'll get 2 or 3 mice, then they seemingly disappear.
This summer, thinking the mice had left the shelter of the house, I put steel wool in some of the cracks where I suspect they may be entering the house, hoping to pre-empt their entrance at the first cold snap. Then, about a month ago, I put D-Con in the utility room, but no traps. I monitored the D-Con and noticed that up until last Saturday, none of it was missing. Then on Sunday the whole box was empty. I could hear scurrying between the walls around the utility room and also thumping noises. I figured it was the mice in their death throes. I figured a whole box (1 1/2 ounces) must have fed more than one mouse. Not sure if I got them all, I bought another box of D-Con and put it in the same location as the last box. It took a couple of days but about half the box has now been eaten. I've also noticed a foul smell while walking down the stairs (above the utility room) which I presume is a dead mouse or mice between the floor and ceiling. I shudder to think of an entire mouse city existing between the floor and ceiling.
Questions I have are:
1. Should I keep replacing any empty boxes of D-con with more boxes until there is no more D-Con being eaten? (And presumably all the mice are dead?)
2. Assuming I have one or two dead mice, how long until the foul smell is gone? Mice can't weigh more than an ounce or so, so I figure it should dissipate in a few days, but am asking the group for their experiences.
3. I've heard that using D-Con causes the mice to bleed internally and get extremely thirsty. This causes the mouse to go outside and seek water sources. Is the bit about the mice wanting to go outside true? Even if it is, I have a floor drain in the utility room and a whole house humidifier drain hose going into it, so any mice have all the water they need.
4. Should I set out traps again?
Any other tips or experiences would be appreciated.
Thanks, Sylvester
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In article <20031025153033.20141.00000105@mb-
there :) is no more D-Con being eaten? (And presumably all the mice are dead?)
That is an option, keep traps located where they usually run and keep monitoring them. Get a weather/animal proof bait station and bait the outside of the home to help keep the numbers from moving in. :) :) 2. Assuming I have one or two dead mice, how long until the foul smell is gone? :) Mice can't weigh more than an ounce or so, so I figure it should dissipate in a :) few days, but am asking the group for their experiences.
It usually takes about a week for a mouse. cold weather it may linger on a bit more but not be as strong an odor, the opposite with warm weather. :) :) 3. I've heard that using D-Con causes the mice to bleed internally and get :) extremely thirsty. This causes the mouse to go outside and seek water sources. :) Is the bit about the mice wanting to go outside true? Even if it is, I have a :) floor drain in the utility room and a whole house humidifier drain hose going :) into it, so any mice have all the water they need.
The bait is an anti-coagulant and the seeking water is an old exterminator's tale...mice are one of the few mammals that can live their whole life without drinking water :) :) 4. Should I set out traps again?
"Sticky" traps placed in out of the way areas can be effective, you just need to check them regularly.
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On 25 Oct 2003 19:30:33 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (McCoysWink) wrote:

If you've got mice that move furniture, you have a problem D-con won't be able to help you with. :-)
This site has a pretty thorough discussion of the house mouse and control methods.
http://www.ianr.unl.edu/pubs/wildlife/g1105.htm
As I'm sure you're aware, it is important to set (snap) traps and bait in places inaccessible to (desired) pets and children. I have used D-con in the attic in back of the refrigerator, and in the under-sink kitchen cabinet with some success. My cat's attention span seems insufficient to effectively stalk and dispose of a mouse, although the (single) one that leaped out of my printer a few months ago eventually disappeared without my intervention.
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I've had good luck with products from www.gardensalive.com and they oughta have mouse baits.
What also works well is to put down piepans of auto antifreeze. It tastes sweet but diegests into toxins in the critters's liver.
Keep away from pets or small children, kills them too.
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