Mystery of the day/Pest paranoia
I am finding small shredded pieces of what looks like dirty cotton in my yard. Just a few pieces here and there. We have had a few windy days here so at first I thought nothing of it, that it was just random debris. But then I found another piece today. Looks almost like little chunks of pillow stuffing.
When I found the piece today it made me paranoid, got me thinking about the mouse we found in the house at the beginning of Winter. We found one dead mouse in the basement, at which point I put multiple baits around the outside of the perimeter and multiple traps and bait stations around the basement. That was September or October. It was the only sign we have ever seen of mice in the house since then and we have had no issues since, leading me to believe it was just a straggler who found his way inside rather than an infestation.
So today I went around my foundation looking for any evidence of places where the material may be getting pulled out of my rim joist insulation, such as more fragments closer to the house or caught between the foundation and siding, and found nothing. Checked all insulation from the inside of the basement and nothing look chewed up or deteriorated. Soffits are all aluminum, and tucked behind aluminum fascia wrap, which is tucked behind the drip edge flashing. No big gaps that I can see.
So it does not appear on the face of it that I have a mouse problem or that any of my insulation has visibly damage, but I am still wondering why I am finding fragments of cotton in my yard. Anybody ever encountered this before? Do house mice or rats even drag insulation material out of the house? I thought they built their nests in place rather than taking the material some place else. Am I paranoid and just looking at squirrel or birds' nest fragments or maybe random garbage that blew in from outside my lawn?
Cottonwood tree? maybe too early for that though.
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