August is National Inventors Month, a time to commemorate great inventions over the years that make our lives better, including the mouse trap. The United Inventors Association of the USA designated a National Inventors Month in 1998, with the intent of promoting a positive image for inventors and their contributions. An often overlooked invention is the mouse trap, a classic method of pest control for homes that dates to the turn of the 20th century.
Here’s a look at just who invented mouse traps that work and various types of mouse traps available today.
Original Mouse Traps
While the concept of trapping mice dates back centuries, the first patented spring-loaded mouse trap was introduced to the market in 1894 by an American inventor named William C. Hooker. The classic bait used with this type of trap, even today, is cheese, but the best bait for mouse traps is actually bread, meat, or butter.
In 1897, British inventor James Henry Atkinson debuted a prototype mouse trap called the “Little Nipper.” This classic snapping mouse trap springs shut in only 0.0038 seconds! The design prevails today and is still manufactured by a company called Procter.
Hiram Stevens Maxim, an American-born inventor who lived in London, contributed a different type of mouse trap that automatically reset itself. Local mills used the traps to effectively get rid of pesky rodents. However, Maxim never applied for a patent on this particular gadget, as he had plenty of other inventions to occupy his time and effort.
Later Mouse Trap Inventions
A more humane mouse trap idea is the Kness Ketch-All, a multi-catch mousetrap that traps mice alive in a little box. Introduced in the 1920s by Austin Kness, this ingenious device can trap several mice before it needs to be reset, making it a convenient method of pest control for homes that is still sold today.
Glue mouse traps are another pest control option introduced in the 1980s. An adhesive substance traps the mouse in place, but does not kill them instantly as spring-loaded mouse traps do. That means many animal activists believe it is the least humane mouse trap option, since rodents die slower than is the case with other traps.
If you find that your home’s rodent infestation is too much for mouse traps to handle, HomeTeam Pest Defense is ready to take on the challenge and provide nontoxic pest control for homes to get rid of your problem. Contact us today for more information.