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Home > Rodents > Do Mice Eat Roaches? FAQ & Plague Prevention Tips

Do Mice Eat Roaches? FAQ & Plague Prevention Tips

A dead roach on a wooden surface

Mice and roaches have a somewhat odd relationship. Though mice are considered one of the biggest threats to cockroaches, the two actually provide a solid food source for one another. Roaches feast on mice poop, and mice eat roaches—especially dead ones they find lying around.

If you’ve been dealing with a cockroach infestation and have your suspicions that mice and snooping around, too, read on to find out more about how and why mice eat cockroaches and to get a heads-up on how to tell whether you might have a double infestation in your home.


Do Mice Eat Cockroaches?

Yes. Mice are omnivores, and though they typically favor grains, seeds, and fruits in their diet, they’re not known for being picky. They tend to nibble on whatever’s around, and this could include tasty snacks like cheese, pet treats, and biscuits or insects like beetles, grasshoppers, spiders, or cockroaches.

It may be quite a surprise to learn that, in the wild, mice also sometimes eat small snakes, spider eggs, frogs, and even birds. In short, anything that’s small enough and easy enough for them to acquire is fair game.

When it comes to cockroaches, mice will typically go for dead ones as it eliminates them having to exert any effort to catch them. Roaches can be pretty speedy, and it’s not always easy for mice to keep up. For this reason, they’re not a mouse’s preferred choice, especially if they can get their paws on something tastier and easier to find.

How Can I Tell If Both Mice and Cockroaches Are in My Home?

If you use roach traps, you may be able to tell if mice are around your home. If you see only parts of roaches in the trap like the head or legs, it’s possible that mice have come along and eaten the other parts. You may also notice an unpleasant odor around your home—cockroaches tend to leave a “musty” smell, whereas mice leave a “stale” sort of smell.

You may also spot droppings. Small, black, peppery droppings are indicative of cockroaches, whereas rodent droppings are larger and have a “granular” shape. Cockroach eggs, which come in sacks called “oothecae” are also visible in dark, damp areas.

As mentioned above, mice are opportunistic feeders, so it’s not unusual for those with a mouse infestation to find nibbled food packets in cupboards or pantries. Roaches have a tendency to chew on cardboard and paper, so you might see holes in your books or boxes.

House mouse running under furniture
Image Credit By: Ralphs_Fotos, Pixabay


What Should I Do If I Have an Infestation?

Using traps like glue traps and snap traps is an inhumane pest control method as they cause pain and suffering to trapped animals—that are often not killed instantly and suffer a prolonged death as a result. They also pose a danger to your pets, if you have them.

If you’re only dealing with one or two pests in your home, you might want to try a live trap. These are boxes that trap the pests inside rather than killing them so that they can then be released somewhere appropriate. However, this is only humane as long as you check the box regularly to avoid an animal being stuck inside it for a long time.

If you’re dealing with a large-scale infestation or aren’t sure how to handle the situation, we’d recommend speaking to a professional humane pest control company. We also recommend taking preventative action to minimize the risk of pests coming back in the future.

How Can I Prevent Mice and Cockroach Infestations?

To prevent infestations from occurring, check out these tips:
  • Clear up spilled food immediately.
  • Keep food in sealed packages or suitable containers.
  • Keep garbage in secure bins and check your yard regularly for food waste or garbage that may attract pests.
  • Empty trash cans daily.
  • Avoid leaving uneaten food out—always store it away securely. This includes pet food, which is very attractive to mice and roaches.
  • Wipe down surfaces daily.
  • Avoid letting your home get cluttered.
  • Wash containers you plan on putting in the recycling bag.
  • Check your skirting boards for cracks and fill them in with a sealant if necessary.
floor cleaning with spray cleaner and sponge
Image Credit: Lucy Lulu, Shutterstock


Final Thoughts

In summary, mice do eat cockroaches, but this doesn’t mean mice should be used for pest control purposes. Mice multiply pretty rapidly, so using mice to get rid of cockroaches just isn’t feasible and only results in a dual infestation.

To reiterate, we’d always advise contacting a professional humane pest control company if you suspect an infestation and taking steps in your daily life to reduce the possibility of an infestation occurring.

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Featured Image Credit: Nicholas Demetriades, Pixabay

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