joe90

How long can vermin live in a sealed cavity?

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Sat watching TV tonight and my wife says something’s behind the settee, on investigation a scratching noise could be heard in the patio door reveal. This reveal is only plasterboard and after tapping it the noise stopped. Later I heard the same noise In the front door reveal!!. I can only imagine it’s a mouse or rat but the cavity is sealed!, but, it was open for a short while when I made some cabling changes. I guess there is no food value in rockwall (which is full fill batts in our cavity) so the vermin will starve, hopefully before it eats too much insulation. My wife’s worry it will die and smell but if the cavity is sealed I said no smell should get out. Just got back after a few days away and it’s still alive. Any thoughts?

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I had that in my old house and they used to scale the cavity and get out into the loft. 

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9 minutes ago, Mr Punter said:

Is the cavity vermin proof all round?

Yes, but I had to break into it for 24hrs to extend wiring into the new conservatory, I can only assume something got in then and is now sealed in!.

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15 minutes ago, newhome said:

I had that in my old house and they used to scale the cavity and get out into the loft. 

 

Thats  not possible in my house, it’s a warm roof and the inner block skin is sealed to the osb lining the roof.

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I would leave it a couple of weeks, provided there is no way they can chew their way out.  If you still hear them it may be time for some bait.

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We all know that Macivity is the Hidden Paw don't we?  Maybe you've found him Joe!

But watch out, he's the Napoleon of crime!

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We used to have mice getting into our loft via the cavity walls in the old house, before we had CWI installed.  They can definitely climb up inside cavity walls with no difficulty.  I spent ages going around trying to find where they were getting in, as it only takes a hole a bit larger in diameter than a pencil for them to squeeze through.  In the end I found a tiny gap under a waste pipe that passed through the wall, filled that with foam topped with silicone and they stopped getting in.  It was always around this time of year they'd get in, too, looking for somewhere warm now that the nights are getting chilly I expect.

 

 

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Well,  because of previous threads on vermin and EWI I have been very careful and apart from the ASHP pipes and the MVHR ducts there are no breaks in the outer skin, that’s why I think something got in when I broke through the brickwork to wire the conservatory. There is no food within the cavity so hopefully whatever it is will die. Hopefully our airtight house will stop the smell getting into the house (my wife’s worry).

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Ooooh I wish I had not read this thread......I won't sleep tonight!

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Mice can distend their skulls I think and get through hole the diameter of a pencil. It's why the openings in the brown/white, round jbs are the size they are. It's probably munched through the vcl. When and if it does die you'll know how airtight things are by the smell :)

 

Still alive I'd guess it's found a way in/out so is living there now. It'll be dragging all sorts of food scraps, small prey in. I found snail shells when I lifted the floor of the dormer upstairs, right in the centre of the bungalow. Squirrels btw have their own pungent, slightly acidic smell. Not nearly as unpleasant as RAT.....unless it dies!

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This was a constant issue in our last house. they were always in the loft. I believe they got through the air bricks then up the cavity into the loft.  Lots of rat poison was the only solution.

 

Occasionally the cat would bring one into the house alive and lose it, that would end up dead somewhere under a kitchen unit or behind furniture, you knew about it by the smell. Oh that smell, revolting.

 

Not seen or heard a single rodent at all in the new house. A BIG advantage of a warm roof design is there is not the tiniest ventilation hole in the loft anywhere.  Oh and no cat flap, so the cat can't just bring a mouse in, and if she appears at the door, mouse in mouth, she does not get let in.

 

Harvest time was when they started to come in having been displaced from the fields.

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9 minutes ago, JSHarris said:

image.png.d4d4549fb343bb658583fb6bfb96ebe1.png

 

That cat from Saudi?

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Our mice did not produce any smell at all. The kitchen extractor in our old house was making a high pitched squeal and I thought the bearings had gone as it was only a cheap thing. So I purchased a new one and began to strip the other one out and as I removed the ducting I found the reason for the high pitched whine. If you imagine a hamsters wheel and the mouse had obviously dropped on top of this and could not get away. So it was wedged in the top of the outer casing where the wheel spins and had a slight coating of grease allover it. I was gutted I had bought a new one as well as there was nothing wrong with the old unit.

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One of my ducts is still open...I moved some boxing in the plant room last week and saw it left unsealed on the inside.  I bought a big box of stainless steel wool for ducts but think last of builders must have skipped it when they left as can't find it.  Can I just put some bathroom silicone in to seal or do I need to get something special pdq.......worried about furry visitors now ...

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1 minute ago, AliMcLeod said:

Mice can last 2-4 days without food according to this. But that assuming they have *no* food.

 

 

Thats good news, there is no food within the cavity (unless it brought a picnic).

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21 minutes ago, lizzie said:

One of my ducts is still open...I moved some boxing in the plant room last week and saw it left unsealed on the inside.  I bought a big box of stainless steel wool for ducts but think last of builders must have skipped it when they left as can't find it.  Can I just put some bathroom silicone in to seal or do I need to get something special pdq.......worried about furry visitors now ...

 

Those industrial pan scourers should be OK.

 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Large-Stainless-Steel-Scourer-Tough-Wire-Cleaning-Pads-Washing-Up-Scrubbers-10pk/302825614647

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7 hours ago, ProDave said:

Oh that smell, revolting.

+1

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Got back from a week away and still heard noises last night, I recon they brought a picnic or are eating each other!!!, I guess they cannot last much longer (I hope). I am going to search my (warm) loft this afternoon in case they gnawed their way into it. Still no food value up there anyway.

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They are more likely still getting in somehow I imagine. 

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