Build a better mousetrap

If you’re of an even slightly sensitive disposition, the problem of mice in the home is nightmarish. Cats are either brutally violent or (step forward, Mooncake, Official Raspberry Pi Cat and Friend of Mice) a pushover.

Mice? What mice?

Mice? What mice?

A snap trap with back-snapping force and liver-squirting power is just horrible to deal with, and I don’t want to talk about it. The glue traps in which the mouse gets stuck in ever-more-panicked contortions, subsequently leaving you to have to hit it very hard with a spade or drown it in a bucket, just don’t bear thinking about. And even the humane traps are pretty…inhumane. In the time between the thing going off in the night and your remembering to check it when you get home from work the next day, a mouse is liable to die of terminal claustrophobia. Which can leave you feeling rather guilty. (Trust me on this.)

Alain Mauer and his Raspberry Pi have come to the rescue. Keep watching – there’s a live mouse test at about 1:10. No mice were harmed etc. etc.

We really like this – it solves the problem of speedy notification so nobody dies of stress, doesn’t harm the mouse (so you can take it outside and drop it off at somebody else’s house somewhere safe but far away from your own kitchen), and relieves the problem of rodenticide guilt.

Want to make your own? Everything you’ll need, including CAD design for the case (which in the video above is made from sheet PVC, which can be cut by hand or in a CNC milling machine); schematics for the infrared barrier he uses; and all the software, is available at Alain’s website. Thanks Alain!