What Do Mice Eat?

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Mice will eat anything that they come across, including plants, beetles, cereal, cookies and pet food. Find out how mice can chew through almost anything using their large incisor teeth with information from a science teacher in this free video on mice.

Part of the Video Series: Mice & Rats
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Video Transcript

You open the pantry and you pull out a box of cereal and you notice something in the box. There is a little tiny hole in one corner. It almost looks like teethmarks. Uh-oh, you might have mice. I'm Janice Creneti. I've been teaching animal and environmental science for about 20 years and I'm here to answer the question what do mice eat. Well there is a hole lot of things that mice eat. I'll tell you some of the ones that you really want to be aware of and explain a little bit about why mice eat the way they eat. Mice in nature are predominantly herbivores and what that means is they eat mostly plant material. You might see them nibbling on a seed or a blade of grass, that's pretty typical. Some mice though will eat insects. They might go after a grasshopper or a beetle. They are referred to as opportunistic omnivores and basically what that means is they'll eat pretty much anything they can get their hands on. Now in your house they'll get a little bit more adventurous. They'll try the cereal, they'll try the cookies, they'll try just about anything they can bury their way into. Mice are part of the rodent family and that means they have these very long incisors. Those are the big flat sort of sharp edged teeth that they use to chew through the things they need to chew through. Mice have these teeth that that continue to grow throughout their entire life so they constantly need to chew on things to keep those teeth worn down so they'll use that to chew through your cereal boxes and chew on your wood even sometimes and they can use that paper to make a nice little warm nest that they can sleep in. Not too appealing if you are trying to actually get rid of them. Mice will go after dog food, they will go after cat food, they will even go after your bird seed so those are the kinds of things that you need to cover up or get rid of if you are trying to get mice out of your house. I'm Janice Creneti and this is what do mice eat.


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