Cheap Tricks: Foil That Mouse

My mortal enemy is the scorpion. When we first moved here, it seemed we were finding scorpions EVERY DAY. I was not a happy camper. Truth be told, I was ready to move.

Mother scorpion carrying her babies
Yes. This is as creepy as it looks. A mother scorpion carrying her brood.

I might seem tough, but I’m a wuss when it comes to scorpions. They hurt! That’s bad enough, but to me the bigger problem is that they are relentless in trying to find a way into your home. They never give up. They’re like mini-Terminators with neurotoxins.

They still find a way in occasionally, but our major entry points have now been closed to them thanks to steel wool. It’s also excellent for keeping mice out. If you have vermin trouble, try steel wool before resorting to poisons.

What pests do you battle in your part of the country?

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  1. Steel wool is awesome. I’ve got it stuffed into every hole I’ve found – both inside and out. I’m still missing a hole somewhere because we’re still getting the occasional mouse in the house. We also get brown recluse spiders which don’t seem to give a crap about steel wool or they’ve got really small holes to use for access and I can’t find the holes. So, we have sticky traps all over the house. (Strategically located so the cat doesn’t step on them.) The traps also get centipedes, cockroaches, crickets, other spiders. What can I say, we live in a buggy place. I chalk it up to being the price we pay for living in the woods and I’ve learned to live with it.

    • BE: I’ve been bitten by a brown recluse, so I don’t blame you for taking extra precautions. Worst spider bite I ever got!

      Being so small there’s no telling where they might be getting in. That’s enough to keep me up at night. 🙁

  2. I’m so glad we don’t have scorpions. It’s bad enough that earwigs plague me. *shivers* I hate them. I really, really, hate them. I don’t know how they get in, but I find them in the shower sometimes. And once, I felt something crawling on my face in bed. It felt plump and juicy when my flailing hands touched it. When I turned on the light, there it was on the floor! Did I mention I hate them?

  3. What a great hack with the steel wool — I’ve never heard of that. We had a small family of bats nesting in our exterior (hollow) columns when we moved here, which gave me the willies. Since they are really helpful in keeping the bug population in check we built a bat house for them and then sealed the tops and bottoms of the columns when they flew out to hunt one night.

    Black widows and brown widows remain an ongoing problem — they completely infested our porch one summer — and almost every year we find coral snakes nesting somewhere in our mulch. We try to spare the non-venomous critters whenever we can, and relocate the pesky ones, but the dangerous ones we do exterminate to protect the kids who live around us and the pets.

    Wolf spiders as big as my hand sometimes try to get in the house through the garage. I really don’t like killing spiders, but they’re very aggressive and will bite. The weird thing about them is they carry their offspring around with them, even after they hatch, so if you spray them with insecticide sometimes hundreds of baby spiders will jump off the Mama. I usually try to sweep them out with a broom into the grass first, and then go for the Raid as the last resort.

  4. Lynn: You know, I’ve never seen any bats around our place, but I wonder if they’ll come if we build bat houses. They are pretty useful. If only they’d eat scorpions too.

    One of our neighbors found a water moccasin in her back yard. I really need to be more vigilant. That’s one snake I don’t want to meet unexpectedly.

  5. We too battle scorpion but only one so far has gotten into our house. It was right after the wood fence was torn down for a brick one. I’m thinking we disrupted them all. Thankfully, knock on wood or whatever, no mice I’ve seen yet. If so, it might be moving time.


    • Betty: I’ve read that Arizona scorpions are a species more dangerous than the ones in Texas, but considering our states are right next to each other, who’s to say scorpions don’t travel to visit their kin in the next state.

      Either way, stay safe, especially since you have a baby visiting regularly. I wouldn’t want to get tagged by either side of that family tree.

  6. No pests as yet, other than the humble house fly. The only tip there we learnt quite recently. NEVER aim for speed with a fly swat. The fly detects swift movement and responds far faster than you. The secret is to bring the swat down on the fly very slowly, They can’t detect slow movement too well. Actually ‘swat’ when you’re an inch or two away and its too late for it to escape. Small fry, I know with toughos like you and your scorpions 🙂

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