Facilities personnel will step up efforts this week to combat a mouse infestation in Welch Hall on Old Campus.
Although Welch residents have been lodging pest-related complaints for weeks, Director of Custodial Services Bob Young said the administration’s response has been limited somewhat by a lack of physical evidence of mice. Young said Facilities officials will begin taking more comprehensive steps following the discovery of such evidence on Friday, but students said a strong reaction should have come sooner.
Facilities sends a worker to investigate every pest complaint, Brown said, and often lays down traps or seals potential mouse holes. But the scale of each response depends on the volume of both calls and evidence, which includes droppings or nibblings. Brown said he does not believe the problem in Welch qualifies as a major infestation.
“From a pest management standpoint, there may not be an infestation, but we respond to it aggressively because we believe that we shouldn’t have any mice,” he said. “In a lot of the calls we responded but we didn’t find evidence.”
The administration’s pest control efforts do not include laying out poisons, so stronger approaches involve more traps and more fillings.
Welch residents said they have been trying bring the administration’s attention to the problem for weeks. Lauren Russel ’09 estimated that despite Young’s claim of lacking evidence, at least a quarter of Welch residents have seen mice.
Henry Agnew ’09 said the traps in his room have not yet caught any mice.
“We expected them to be doing a little more,” he said. “Nobody’s been very proactive in addressing the problem.”
At one point, Agnew said he unsuccessfully tried to bait a mouse with a Ritz cracker while he waited on top of his bed with a Swiffer mop. He and his suitemates find their furry companions disconcerting, Agnew said.
“It grosses me out to think that mice might have been chewing the food around here, but we’ve come to accept it in a way,” he said. “There’s nothing else we can do about it.”