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Unwanted Visitors and the Trouble they Caused
We have been full-timing for eleven and one half years and only once before did we have mice visitors. I didn't want them either time, but they came anyway. 

The first time we were in our little Mallard motorhome (24 foot Class C) and we were parked at the LBJ Ranch in Stonewall, Texas, for three months (we were volunteering there). One night we heard little scratching and scurrying sounds coming from behind the dash. The next day Ron took the dash off and sure enough, they had been building a nest from the insulation material on the motor side of the dash. Once he destroyed their nest, we never heard from them again.

This time it was different. I hadn't worried about pests with the Dream. It seems so well built without easy access for critters. We have never seen an ant in the nearly four years we have lived in it (knock on wood). I mean, how dare they or any other critter enter our castle. 

I have always maintained that keeping food properly stored in air tight containers (Tupperware) keeps them from wanting to come in. I'll blame our friends, Judy and Cec, for introducing us to Costco. While there we purchased a large bag of party mix (the kind made of Chex type cereal). I put some of it in a piece of Tupperware in a kitchen cupboard; the remaining mix I stored in a Zip Lock bag and put it outside in the bay we call our "little store."  I just happened to take this picture for a slide presentation I was doing for the Life on Wheels Conference.

Sometime between Medford, Oregon, and Yakima, Washington, we picked up the furry hitchhikers; I saw the tracks one morning when we were in Yakima. Immediately we began checking every drawer and cupboard inside and everywhere we looked there were tracks. When Ron lifted up the bed to check in the storage space under the bed, he reported that a mouse was sitting there looking at him. NOT GOOD!!!!

We proceeded to remove everything so things could be laundered and the carpet, floors and cupboards thoroughly washed with disinfectant. Several satin pillow cases, a blanket and a nice sweater type coat of mine had been destroyed and against the back wall under the bed to our shock was most of the contents of our bag of party mix. That told us that there were more than one mouse and they had been busy. I started my exploration of the outside bays by looking in that one pictured above. Sure enough that bag had a large hole in it and was nearly empty. It gave me the creeps to know that mice had been so busy right under my side of the bed. We spent the entire day scrubbing everything and did about $30 worth of laundry. We emptied and washed each and every bay under the motorhome and checked in every crack and crevice we could yet we couldn't find a nest other than the party mix.

Early in the day, Ron went to the nearby KMart and purchased some new mouse traps. I hate the poisons (d-Con) because I never know if the mice are caught. I wanted to see the buggers dead. After we had removed everything from that storage compartment under the bed, we placed one of the traps by where their party mix had been (it wasn't mine any longer). By early afternoon when we checked we had caught one mouse.  We replaced that trap with another and by evening we had another. He joined his friend in the dumpster.  We left traps around for a couple of days but didn't catch any more. I still didn't like sleeping in the bed for a few nights. I kept picturing what had been going on under me.

We think that the only access that these furry things had was the sewer hose. It would be easy to climb up and the hole the hose drops down from has enough space for a mouse to run up and in. We now have d-Con there and lots of steel wool wrapped around the sewer hose and a few other holes we found. 

Learn a lesson from us and don't be too smug thinking that mice would not enter your RV. Especially in cold evenings or when camped in a wooded area or in a field, your home looks good to these creatures. And above all, don't leave food stored in Zip Lock bags. They can chew through that in a minute. 

This all took place on the 4th of July and I can think of much better ways to celebrate the holiday. 


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