Something Mice and Whitetails have in Common

One evening two weeks ago, while working late on a writing assignment at my kitchen table, I finally caught the long-tailed house mouse that had been living in the works of my refrigerator with a plastic trap baited with peanut butter.  The trouble was, though it’s head was inside the trap, it didn’t die. After annoyingly pushing the trap around my kitchen floor for about ten minutes, I decided to get up and end its life by stepping down on the trap to apply fatal pressure to its neck. Instead, I inadvertently released the mouse and quick as a wink, it ducked under my refrigerator. Now it won’t touch a mousetrap, proving even a mouse knows better than make the same mistake twice.

The trouble with using baits to attract whitetails to stand sites is, whitetails are smarter than mice. Once a mature whitetail (2-1/2 years of age or older) discovers a potentially dangerous human via sight, hearing or smell guarding a site baited with doe-in-heat pheromone, tarsal musk, clover, turnips, corn, apples, something with protein in it, mineral blocks, salt blocks or sounds that attempt to imitate doe bleats, buck grunts or battling bucks and survives the discovery, it will thereafter avoid that site while a readily recognized hunting season is in progress, at least during daylight hours when hunters are normally afoot.

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