The house mouse you may encounter in your home typically has a lifespan. This lifespan ranges from six months to two years. The average lifespan of a house mouse is six months. However, with plenty of food, water, and no predators, they can live up to 2.5 years.
While pet mice may be charming household additions, most mice are uninvited guests. Knowing the potential lifespan of mice is helpful for homeowners. It informs them that waiting for the mice to die is not a practical solution to a pest problem.
Learn more about the mouse life cycle and their overall lifespan to gain better insight into potential infestations in your residence.
The Typical Lifespan of a Mouse
In nature, a mouse usually survives for about five to six months. Given ideal circumstances, this can extend to approximately 12 to 18 months. A mouse thrives under ideal circumstances. These circumstances include a consistent supply of food, minimal competition from other rodents or predators, and a fairly moderate climate.
Mice can endure months without water, obtaining the hydration they require from their food, or from the condensation on sink pipes. Reproduction slows during winter due to decreased temperatures. Indoor mice breed year-round, while outdoor mice typically reproduce more actively in the spring and fall.
The Life Cycle of a Mouse
Mouse pups are tiny. They are often called ‘pinkies’ because of their hairless, pink bodies. Their size is roughly that of a quarter, and their weight is about the same as a sheet of paper. Encountering baby mice is unlikely unless you stumble upon a mouse’s nest.
By two weeks old, the mice’s eyes and ears have opened and they have grown fur. By three weeks, the mother weans her mice, and they start venturing from the nest in search of food.
Their diet, based on their environment, can range from dry foods and fresh or decaying produce to insects. However, they seem to prefer foods similar to what their mother consumed during pregnancy.
Mice reach sexual maturity around six weeks old. Males attract a mate by emitting ultrasonic songs that are inaudible to humans and using pheromones detectable only by other mice.
Once a male mouse impregnates a female, she will give birth to her litter in 18-21 days. A litter typically consists of five or six babies. Considering that half the litter might be female and capable of reproducing within six weeks, it is clear that these pests can reproduce at a fast pace.
If you choose to ‘wait and see’ for pest control, it could put your household at risk. The problems could range from various issues related to mice, including diseases like the potentially deadly hantavirus.
Although cats and dogs are natural predators that may help control mouse populations, they rarely eliminate infestations. Pets that are well-fed might not be as motivated to catch mice. Mice are attracted to pet food, which is often readily available in homes with pets.
If you think these unwelcome visitors have infiltrated your home, you should look into our proven strategies. These strategies aim at eradicating mice and include preventive botanical solutions.