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mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: wurm
Date: November 08, 2021 07:45AM
It's almost that time. Time to store the bike for several months (as well as the lawnmower). In the past I've used mothballs to keep away critters and they've worked well, but the smell is pretty obnoxious. I'm wondering about an alternative this time. I've seen dryer sheets, peppermint oil, and lavender sachets mentioned. I'm looking for cheap and effective. Curious to hear if the forumites have a favorite.

I don't want to kill them and then have to deal with carcasses. I just want to keep the squirrels, chipmunks, skinks or whatever away from my stored stuff. Thanks for your ideas.
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Re: mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: MrNoBody
Date: November 08, 2021 08:15AM
Extra Hot Ground Cayenne Pepper in 180 Micron Nylon Mesh Filter
Drawstring Bags (used in aquarium filters).
bezosville has the bags, 6 pack for $5.

You'll also need a N95 Mask, nitrile gloves, & eye protection.
Tip: do not fill the bags indoors & only fill about 1/3 full!



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Re: mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: mattkime
Date: November 08, 2021 09:03AM
Whats attracting them? What kind of critters?



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Re: mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: wurm
Date: November 08, 2021 09:18AM
I think the only thing attracting them is some protection from the elements. I've found rudimentary nests under the deck of the lawnmower. My son had mice near the firewall of his car and discovered remnants of a nest near the cabin air filter. I've found acorns in my saddlebags. Engine compartments are notorious for attracting them. One of my storage rituals is to cover the exhaust pipes with a baggie and elastic band just to keep them out of there.

MrNoBody, thanks for those ideas.
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Re: mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: bfd
Date: November 08, 2021 05:44PM
… with any/all of the deterrents you need to target the exact spot, not a general area. Peppermint oil worked best in this case - probably rats that were using the engine bay as a dining/sleeping area. They/it brought their seeds and stuff and ate them in the relative warmth and protection of the cylinder cover. Once that was known, and a paper towel with peppermint oil was placed in that spot, they/it simply moved over to the next horizontal spot (the air cleaner).

From there they/it moved to the battery, the air intake, and basically any other horizontal spot. While the areas protected by peppermint oil did not get repeat visits as long as they were covered, the odor itself apparently wasn't much of a deterrent in general. It took several weeks of playing whack-a-mole or rat or other rodent, but finally the vermin left the engine bay, and they haven't returned since.

But it was a nightly ritual to place the odor embedded paper towels (during the day they were kept in a gallon size plastic baggie), and then return them to the baggie them in the morning before starting the car.

Some recommend the sonic devices, but they're expensive, and the data doesn't suggest that they work very consistently. Mothballs are toxic - and it's not just the odor, it's some very poisonous vapor that'll get into the air - whether it's in a car or in your garage. Plus, for mothballs to really work as intended, they need to be enclosed in something that's fairly airtight, like a box or bag, not left out in the open, like in a garage. Really not recommended.
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Re: mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: mrbigstuff
Date: November 08, 2021 05:47PM
Ammonia soaked rags. Lasts a short time but seems to work for a couple of months at least.
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Re: mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: Diana
Date: November 08, 2021 11:53PM
Where are said critters coming in?

I would get a cat. Specifically, if you don’t want or can’t have one, a cat’s scat. Used cat litter works as well. Spread it around where the critters get into the storage shed, and it often works as a deterrent as said critters don’t want to be eaten by the cat. The fresher the scat, the better, as it indicates an active predator is near. Disgusting? Probably. But you did say cheap, and as the human servant to my overlords, I can tell you it can be plentiful at times (and aromatic). eek2 smiley
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Re: mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: Racer X
Date: November 09, 2021 12:29AM
panther urine.



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Re: mothballs, dryer sheets, peppermint oil, or ?
Posted by: MrNoBody
Date: November 09, 2021 07:09AM
Not a 'cat person'? Put up a nesting box for American Barn Owls.
how to (PDF)
In one season, a barn owl family can consume 4,000 rodents.




39°36'17"N 75°44'43"W

DuckDuckGo
The search engine that doesn't track you.

DemComm Records 2021 Greatest Hits
includes:
Taxman by Joe & Nancy's Rich Ice Cream Band
The Humpty Dance by The Harris-Brown Hookup
Lets Spend The Night Together by The Fang-Swalwell Gang
Díaz-Canel Is A Friend of Ours by The AOC Squad
My Old Kentucky Retirement Home by MitchMcC & The Soggy Boxer Boys
Burning Down The House by Merrick & The Goons
Back In the USSR by Bernie's Red Square Trio

patriot smiley
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