Do rodents eat insects?

The family of rodents is a broad one including squirrels, rats, guinea pigs, prairie dogs, mice, and a large number of other mammals. Most rodents tend to prefer nuts, seeds, and grains, but in fact, almost all rodents are considered "opportunistic eaters", and will consume anything available to stay alive. Despite their propensity for seeds, grains, etc., by nature they are omnivores. This means that they will include both plants and animals in their diet. Because Mice have such a voracious appetite, and will consume a wide range of agricultural crops, they present a grave problem for farmers, and food gardens.

Besides eating a steady diet of grains, nuts, seeds, and fruits, mice will also consume leaves, stems, roots, bark, and fungi from plants. Also included in their opportunistic diet are insects, lizards, frogs, eggs, bugs, snakes, worms and a plethora of more vertebrates and invertebrates. Mice like to live in groups, because of this they will generally feed on whatever is consumed by the other members of their commune. The average size adult mouse must eat constantly to support its metabolism rate. It will eat about 5 grams of food per day, but only drink about ½ an ounce of water. When in your home, they are not fussy about whose food they eat. They will gladly raid your cabinets, eat off dirty dishes, ravage the garbage or steal food from your pet’s bowl. Their voracious eating habits tend to make them a threat to their surrounding natural habitat.

They are perfectly happy to raid nests and feed on small birds and their eggs, or insects, and their larva. This can endanger the natural order of things in certain eco-settings. The threat to agriculture, stems from their propensity to feed on exceedingly wide variety of crops, including rice and other grains, soy, and corn. The will strip the bark as well as product from nuts, and fruit bearing trees. Mice, like most rodents, tend to live in large social groups. They are known to breed prolifically, and tend to make their homes near other animals (including humans) to assure their community a readymade supply of food and water. Favorite outside nesting areas include SUBURBAN: Garbage dumps, refuse piles, and buildings- whether abandoned or not (like your home or business) URBAN: Underbrush, hollow logs, piles of leaves, barns, and sheds. No matter where they live, the location is most often chosen because it will provide safe shelter as well as prolific feeding grounds. Mice, like most rodents must also chew continuously because teeth grow constantly throughout their lives. Chewing is the only way to wear them down. This attributes to the destruction of clothes, pictures and other keepsakes, plastic piping and other destruction around your home. Mice live according to a strict “pecking order” of dominance. If circumstances are dire, and they are unable to find a steady source of food, they will practice cannibalism, feeding first on the young, then on their weaker pack members.

Go back to the How to get rid of mice in the attic home page. You might also want to read about how to kill mice and why the use of snap traps is better than mouse poison. Read an analysis of the different types of traps and how to use them on the how to trap mice page. Learn why bait is not as important as trap type, placement and location. Also read a full analysis of mouse repellent to understand why it never works. If you see droppings and want to identify them, read the mouse poop page. If you need to hire professional help, read about how much does mouse removal cost? or you can read this site to learn how to do it yourself. Feel free to email me about Do rodents eat insects?

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