I have been staring at soda bottles for years and thought there had to be a way to make a mousetrap out of one. They're strong and lightweight and many others have come up with some pretty cool uses for them from funnels to scoops to bird houses. I wanted it to be friendly and humane. I also wanted it to be something anyone could build. It had to be simple to operate and easy to bait. I was able to achieve all of those goals all in one with my diy humane soda bottle mousetrap. It's amazing how simple it is and how well it works.
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Step 1: Watch the Video
Watch how easy it is to make and bait . No slamming doors or tricky latches to set. The mouse stays very calm during his capture and it's very easy to release him.
Step 2: Parts List and Tools
1) small soda, cola or pop bottle and the cap.
2) a small piece of 2x4 wood.
3) a metal coat hanger.
4) one screw
5) a clothes pin or paper clip
6) 2 pointy things (nails or pins)
1) a drill
2) a drill bit, one size bigger than a coat hanger
3) a drill bit one, size smaller than a coat hanger
4) screw driver
Step 3: Balance the Bottle
First take the 2 nails or pins and gently lift the bottle and find where the balance point is by placing the pins at the same spot on opposite sides of the bottle. Mark the spot. Now make 2 more marks 1/4" (6mm) ahead of those marks towards the bottle opening (not towards the bottom) By doing this, the bottle will be balanced a bit more towards the rear. This is where you'll drill 2 holes that are one size bigger than the coat hanger rod.
Step 4: Build the Pivot
Take a pair of cutters and cut the bottom portion of the coat hanger off. Then cut that piece in 2, one piece longer than the other. Use the shorter one to put through the holes in the bottle and place it against the wood so as to have 1/2" (13mm) of clearance at the bottom of the bottle. Now hammer it into the 2x4 like a nail. Slide the bottle onto it and use the clothespin to hold it on.
Step 5: Bend the Rod
Take the other piece of coat hanger and bend a hook in it. Then bend it at a 90 degree angle. Take your screw and washer and screw it into the wood. Slide the hook under the washer and snug it down. We'll make an adjustment in a few steps.
Step 6: Drill the Cap
Now take the smaller drill and drill 2 holes in the side of the cap. If you're new at drilling, you may want to use a pair of pliers to hold the cap.Take the cap and wiggle and push and slide it onto the rod. (We want the hole to be smaller so that the cap is a tight fit and the mouse won't be able to move it)
Step 7: Adjusting
This part is easy. Move the bottle up and down with your finger. Move and adjust the cap so that it doesn't touch the bottle, but comes as close as you can get it, and that it's centred. You can loosen the screw and slide the coat hanger, you can twist the cap, you can slide the cap, it's adjustable in all directions! Remember that the coat hanger metal is pretty soft too. If things aren't quite aligned, just give it a bend to make it right. Once you play with it for a while, you'll get it perfect.
Step 8: Baiting the Bottle
Using peanut butter is best. Just a smidgen on the end of your finger is all you need. Put it in the top of the inside of the bottle as far in as you can reach with your finger.
Step 9: Placement
The best place to put the trap is along a wall since they don't like to travel across open spaces.
Step 10: Capture and Release
Wait until he's at the bottom end of the bottle then slide the bottle off and screw on a cap. Now take him to where you would like to release him, undo the cap and lay the bottle on the ground. When he's comfortable, he'll leave the bottle.
Step 11: If You Missed the Video at the Start, Here It Is Again!
Happy Humane Mouse trapping! You'll find that looking at him up close in the bottle, you can't help but like the furry little guy!
Grand Prize in the
Animals in the Wild Challenge