We’re so lucky that our ecosystem is full of animals who work behind the scenes to keep our homes, lawns, and gardens free of pests! One single owl, for example, can kill twelve mice per night, while a skunk will spend weeks digging up every rat’s nest in a neighborhood. Coyotes are probably the best rodent control of all, with rats, mice, and voles comprising the majority of their diet. Everywhere you look in nature, there’s someone hard at work killing pests!
We often see a domino effect when people relocate or kill wild predators. It’s usually only a matter of time before the newly predator-free area becomes a hotbed of uncontrolled breeding for rats and mice. A single female mouse, for example, can have up to 140 pups per year, with each of her young being equally prolific. Without predators to keep their population in check… well, we promise you’d prefer to see owls instead!
It can get even worse when rodent numbers explode, because invariably, someone in your neighborhood will use rodenticides to poison them. Any remaining wild predators nearby may end up succumbing to secondary poisoning, leaving the area even more wide open and inviting for rats and mice. The reproductive rates of rodents are much faster than of any of their predators, so your neighborhood can end up on a treadmill, constantly chasing infestations with poison while wild predators die.
We need to coexist with wild animals more peacefully, and let them work for us. Please be a good neighbor to wild predators. By leaving them to raise their families in peace, you will help to protect your home from more damaging critters.