Cambridge Rodent Control: The Facts About Rodents’ Eyesight

Cambridge Rodent Control: The Facts About Rodents' Eyesight

An infestation of mice is a legitimate cause for concern, requiring prompt rodent removal in Cambridge. Because people fear mice, a lot of myths have grown up around them. One of the most persistent is that mice either have poor eyesight or are completely blind. The truth is a little bit more complicated.

Are Mice Blind?

Everyone has probably heard the old nursery rhyme about “Three Blind Mice.” This little ditty dates back to the 17th century and likely was intended to have a metaphorical meaning. It probably doesn’t refer to literal mice at all, and certainly isn’t meant to convey biological information about mice as a whole.

Just as individual humans may be born blind or lose their vision later in life for various reasons, the same could theoretically happen to mice. Therefore, some mice may be blind, but mice on the whole have functioning eyes. They just don’t function exactly the same way that human eyes do, which adds to the confusion.

How Good Is a Mouse’s Eyesight?

Mice do not have the visual acuity that humans do. They are not able to make out a lot of detail. Mice are nocturnal animals and don’t use their vision primarily to find food, so they don’t need much visual acuity.

A mouse’s eyes are positioned on either side of its head. This is in contrast to human eyes, which face forward in the skull. The position of a mouse’s eyes gives it a much wider field of vision than humans have. Mice can see almost behind them, and while they can’t make out a lot of detail, they are very keen at detecting movement. As prey creatures, mice have to be careful to avoid predators, and the ability to perceive movement over a very broad field of vision helps them to detect potential threats almost immediately so that they can make a quick escape.

How Keen Are Mice’s Other Senses?

Mice spend a lot of time foraging for food. For this, they rely primarily on their sense of smell, which is very sensitive. Mice are able to detect small particles of food by smell over very large distances. Their sense of smell helps them to discover small holes in the exteriors of houses by which they may gain entry.

Mice also have very acute hearing. They can hear sounds at much higher frequencies than human beings can. Their hearing sensitivity helps them to avoid predators and also communicate with one another. They can produce vocalizations that are high above the normal hearing range for humans, but other mice can hear them. Another common rodent cliché is “quiet as a mouse,” but it may be that mice make a lot more noise than people realize because they can’t hear most of their vocalizations.

Mice also have a sense of touch that they use to navigate their surroundings in the dark. Mice have long whiskers that connect to sensitive nerve endings. When the whiskers brush against something, the nerve endings send information to the brain that helps them to get their bearings. If you see a mouse in your home, it is likely to be along the baseboard rather than out in the middle of the room. Empty space deprives mice of sensory information from their whiskers while leaving them more vulnerable to predators.

Why Should You Hire Truly Nolen for Rodent Removal in Cambridge?

If you see a mouse, you may wonder, “Should I look for pest control services near me, or can I handle it myself?” If you’re seeing mice, the infestation may have grown to a large number. Our process includes sealing entry points so the mice can’t come back, and we also get rid of their parasites to prevent disease. Learn more about the services we offer in Cambridge.