How to Catch a Mouse Outside

Brittany Tucker

Mice are well known for their sneaky, discreet behavior, but they’re also well known for destroying homes, cars and gardens as well as for spreading harmful diseases. Mice normally live outdoors in fields, but frequently migrate into structures, like barns, houses and cars for food, water and shelter.

Outdoor mice regularly destroy homes, cars and even gardens.

Learning how to catch a mouse outside is essential if you want to prevent the critter from entering and destroying your home, car or garden.

  1. Purchase a few live traps. Live traps are used to catch animals alive, without injuring the critters in the process. You can purchase live traps at hardware stores and pet stores for an affordable price.

  2. Place the live traps in areas where there have been recent sightings of mice or on mouse pathways outdoors. According to the University of Florida IFAS Extension, outside mice runways are paths two to three inches wide. They look like smooth, hard-packed trails under vegetation. Bait the traps with bacon or peanut butter, and place them on the mice trail.

  3. Check the traps at dusk and dawn when mice are usually most active.

  4. Release the mouse back into the wild. Take the mouse at least one mile away from your property and release it back into the wild to prevent the mouse from returning to your property. Check with your state animal laws to determine If releasing animals back into the wild is allowed.

  5. Tip

    If your state does not allow releasing mice back into the wild, take the mouse to your humane society or veterinarian to be euthanized. If you’re not too concerned about injuring the mouse, get a few cats or snap traps to catch mice outside.


    Use protective gloves when carrying and releasing the mouse back into the wild, as mice carry a wide array of diseases.

    If you opt to use snap traps or other deadly devices to kill mice, be aware that a child or pet also could be injured by this type of trap.