Do deer mice harm people or property?
When deer mice find their way inside buildings, they damage furniture, cushions, and appliances bychewing though these materials to make burrows. They can cause short circuits and even electrical fires when they gnaw on wires. When gathering soft materials for their dens, the mice rip up insulation. The grain-based diets of deer mice lead them to scavenge seeds from nurseries and orchards, and they can have a detrimental effect on re-seeding efforts in deforested areas. Deer mice also enter gardens and feed on agricultural crops, such as avocados, corn, alfalfa, melons, and almonds. Finally, they carry dangerous diseases such as hantavirus, leptospirosis, plague, salmonellosis, tularemia, Lyme disease, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever.