Being prepared with a stockpile of goods is more than simply gathering those goods. It’s gathering, storing them correctly, and protecting them. No, not from scavengers or thieves, but from rodents.
Mice, rats, and other toothy mammals love to scurry into places they don’t belong and wreak havoc on the goods inside, especially in the colder seasons. Aside from the damage they can do to fabrics, cardboards, mylar, and foodstuffs, they also carry an above average amount of insects and disease. Here are a few ways to protect your belongings from these creatures.
DE, as it’s commonly known as, is a chemical that causes dehydration in various insect and rodents, the consumption or contact with it will cause them to dehydrate and die. It is, however, generally harmless to larger creatures like pets, livestock, and people. For this reason, it’s a common anti-pest chemical. Some farmers even mix small amounts into animal feed to de-worm them. You can sprinkle DE around stockpiles or mix it in with bait.
The downsides of DE are pretty clear. There will be a limited amount of it, so should you find yourself in a fully off-grid living scenario, it will eventually run out. It’s also a pretty painful way to go, which won’t sit well with anyone more animal-compassionate.
Maybe chemicals aren’t your things. You’d rather something more passive and preventative than lethal. A common alternative is aluminum foil. The deterring nature is simple: rodents don’t like it. It feels bad on the teeth, is painful to eat, and the crinkling sound is unpleasant on their ears. So they avoid it. One way to prevent any unwanted creatures is to cover important goods in the foil or to line the edges of your storage area with it. Basically, place it anywhere you want to stop a rat.
Like with DE, this is another non-renewable source, so be sure to stockpile a lot of it.
You’re living off-grid. We can respect that. But as such, you need a way to have an endless supply of rodent repellent. Why not try cedar chips? The wooden chips of cedar trees emit a smell that mice and rats in particular absolutely loathe. One way to prevent them from entering your stockroom is to fill a bunch of buckets with the chips and place them around important storage areas. Some folks line the edges of the room with it, like a mulch.
The best part of all: if the smell eventually fades, you can make more from a cedar tree. Just hope that there happen to be cedars within local reach.