If you're like me, you experienced a childhood trauma that left you with an unreasonable fear of dead animals. Then you wisely bought a hundred-year-old house, which sometimes is visited by mice. How will you get rid of the unwelcome guests without coming face-to-face with their disgusting little corpses (which give you the jibblies)? You'd build a no-see, no-touch rodent death chamber.
(You consider using poison, but you realize it would be a mistake. They usually crawl into the walls to die, but not always. Sometimes they die in shoes or coolers or under your sofa (see "childhood trauma" above). And the whole idea is to get rid of them without having to see them. Ever.)
Step 1: Gather Stuff
Paper grocery bag
Spring-loaded mousetrap (the killing kind)
Strip of paper (not pictured)
Step 2: Prep the Mousetrap
Glue a 1cm wide strip of paper to the top of the trap, right next to the locking arm. The paper should extend up the entire length of the trap.
Lift the kill bar and feed the strip of paper under it.
Step 3: Prep the Bag
Stand the paper bag on one of its narrow sides. You may need to reverse-fold the creases to make it stand open.
Cut a horizontal slit in the bottom of the bag, near the bottom edge where it is resting on the table. The slit should be slightly wider than the paper flag that is glued to the trap.
Step 4: Mount the Trap in the Bag
Hot glue the trap inside of the bag on the narrow side which is now the floor of the death chamber. Position the trap so that the flag is directly under the slit. On the trap that is not set, the kill bar should point toward the opening in the bag.
(This and many subsequent photos were taken through a cut-away portion of the bag for demonstration purposes. You should leave your bag intact to protect your sensitive eyes from having to gaze upon dead rodents.)
Step 5: Set the Trap
Bait the trap with whatever you want. Peanut butter works well.
Set the trap in the normal manner, then feed the end of the flag through the slit so that it is looped over the kill bar.
Tear off the flag so that only a few centimeters extend out of the bag. This will ensure that the entire flag is pulled inside when the trap is sprung.
You might want to fold a handy entrance ramp at the opening for your mice guests. You want to make it as easy as possible for them, right?
Step 6: Wait for a Critter to Meet Its Doom!
Put the prepared death chamber against the wall in your basement, attic, or wherever you find signs of mousey activity. Check the death chamber daily, but to NOT look into it! Simply glance at the flag on the back. If the flag is still sticking out, leave it alone. If the flag is pulled in, the trap has been sprung.
Step 7: Dispose of the Whole Death Chamber
When the flag is no longer visible, carefully (so you don't accidentally see inside) pick up the bag and fold over the top a few times. Take the whole thing out to the trash.
Repeat as necessary.
Some people will complain that you are wasteful not to simply empty the trap and reuse it. Those people are insane. Traps are dirt cheap, and you can make a new death chamber in five minutes. That's a small price to pay to avoid the jibblies.