Breeding Feeder Mice
Breeding feeder mice is not only fun and easy but you can make a good profit $$ as well. the pet stores average price for mice is to much, $2.49 each (you should make that profit or savings) . To start a small breeding oporation you'll need housing for the mice, 4 containers, 4 watering bottles, a bag of cider chips or cotton filling , food and don't forget the Mice. (breeding works best when you buy a male and a female, LOL )
Things You'll Need
- Housing5gal buckets or glass aquariums something made of hard plastic would be good, walmart sells large plastic containers of all shapes and sizes . Length and depth doesn't mater as much as height, mice are good jumpers, Ive never seen a mouse jump higher than 15" (I use 5gal buckets from home depot). no matter what type of container you use be shure there are no ridges that the little guys can climb up the side.
- Watering bottles For mice it really doesn't mater the size of bottle (I prefer larger = less times refilling) don't fall pray to marketing that says "For Mice" or "For Hamsters"... however the type of bottles you perches is important, the "neck" of the bottle needs to be bent at a 45 degree angle (some times celled "bent neck")
- Cider Chips Good for bedding, smell removal and Mice toiletpaper (lol) (I've never lost a mouse or had any cider related respiratory problems in the 5 years I've been breeding)
- But here's another option
- Cotton filling from walmart i've also found to be easyer to clean up
- Food Any thing vegetarian. things like grains and starches. Thay love leftovers like speggity (mice will eat around the meat). also cat, dog or bird food.
- Mice start with only 1 male, and 3 or more females (for each addional female you'll need 1 addional 5 gal bucket )
Housing and Breeding Tips
First, housing mice. Make a hole in the side of the bucket large enough to fit the water bottle's tip thru, then fill and attach the water bottle. All the females are to be kept in one bucket with some food and cider chips. They will separate or hide there food as the Lady's feel fit, there good at putting things where they wont things and they tend to get bossier when they become moms... Now make a bucket for the male, he's kept separate so that he'll breed when you want him too also some times females can go into heat halfway thru pregnecy (bad for development of babes she currently has and will make her more pregenent also the additional ones will come out preemie) and directly after giving birth, ether way its very hard on there body.
Well i think most people know what to do to get the females to become pregnant, grab a female and put her in with the male leave her for 12 to 15 hrs (if the male has been by himself for a long time it may only take 30Min's lol) . I like to rotate the females IE. day 1 female 1, day 2 no female, day 3 female 2, day 4 no female, day 5 female 3, exec.. I have found that giving him the day in the middle makes him breed more pups per litter (and yes baby mice are called pups).
Now to tell if shes pregnant, if its not obvious hold her across your fingers and lift one finger directly under her belly, wile looking at her back if she looks like she has round marbles on each side of her belly she maybe pregnant. If you think a the mom is pregnant make a new bucket and place her in and add lots of extra food and bedding when she gets close to her due date she will make a nest like bed.
Smells are very important to mice. Never but moms with moms, most of the time if a baby has the the smell of any other mom she will eat the pups. If you need to add one litter to another wash the pups with dish detergent to give them a smell other than there mom. one mom can take care of up to 12 pups and can birth up to 14
When returning mom to the rest of the females you'll need to give her a bath so that the other females wont attack her.
extra info: Pups bite when there eyes start to open, if you handle them for a fue days they'll stop.
The Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome is an uncommon but serious disease spread from mice to people when people breathe in dust contaminated by droppings, urine, or saliva from an infected mouse. The disease can also be spread when people touch contaminated objects and then touch their nose or mouth. In many cases of hantavirus syndrome, deer mice have been the carrier. House mice have not been identified as carriers. About a hundred cases have been reported in the Pacific Northwest.
Because of hantavirus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend precautions when cleaning up mouse-infested areas. CDC recommends that you wear gloves and wet contaminated areas and dead mice with household detergent or bleach solutions before cleaning them up. Be sure to wash the gloves before removing them. For details, visit the CDC web site.
Don't keep deer mice
Even tho there cute too, Don't keep deer mice! If you catch one ware a mask (handkerchief over mouth and nose) and yes you can feed them, even pet them. All ways WASH your hands and anything else that is touched by the deer mice. Description Color varies greatly with habitat and geographic area. Often grayish to red-dish brown above; white below. Tail distinctly bicolor and short haired. 2 forms in eastern part of range: woodland and prairie. Woodland form has much longer tail and larger feet, ears, and body than prairie form.
Jaxy Laugh on July 29, 2018:
I have had great success breeding mice for many years. I make my own breeding tanks up from scratch very cheap and easy and I find you get great litters of pinkies if you feed the mice pig breeding sow rolls. I have done this for yrs and I can tell you it better than shop bought mice food. I get my sow rolls from farm shop. I also found that pinkies are bigger and females are way healthier. I have pics of my feed and my breeding tubs
Info Provider (author) from St. Louis Mo. on May 02, 2012:
This is the cheapest way I've found and CrystaAllen the water bowl will work but mothers like to fill the bowl with bedding and food (and poo)... i like the cage to stay cleaner longer 1st for the mice and 2nd i'm lazy. I like it easy, clean, and cheap!!!
kaywolf12 from royal arkansas on April 14, 2012:
about how expensive is it to do all this because i need to fnd cheep pinkies for my western rat snake
CrystaAllen from New Baltimore, Michigan on February 04, 2012:
Ok, I have one male and one female, I plan to breed them for the pups, I realize this is grotesque but they are good snake food. If it is only a solo breeding pair can they remain in the same cage the entire time? Also, my friend used to breed them for her pet snake and I was told they don't need the water bottle necessarily but can instead simply use a water bowl. I have a housing for them, I use fir bark for them mixed with shredded paper as needed, a water bowl, and a food bowl. Is that a good set up?
Info Provider (author) from St. Louis Mo. on January 22, 2011:
$5.00 for bucket at home depot and at walmart all of the x-mass tubs are on SALE and lastly glass brakes ( with lots of cleaning one mistake with glass and lost money and more mess to clean )
Sam Sundberg on January 18, 2011:
Is there a reason you opt for plastic buckets rather than, say, a 10-gallon aquarium? I'm just curious as I've never tried buckets.
Thomas on September 06, 2010:
or another way to breed mice efficiently is to look up "rodent rack" and build your self a rack for about $100. All you need is wood, mixing tubs, and hardware cloth. I would also recommended looking up mouse breeding on youtube.
Info Provider (author) from St. Louis Mo. on August 11, 2010:
you can try http://www.qualitycage.com/ for CAGES
Info Provider (author) from St. Louis Mo. on August 11, 2010:
Wire cages, because there easier to clean, and over time (after a year or two) mice will chew holes in the plastic containers. Also over a few years plastic can become porous
and start holding bad smells. Cages are not good for expecting mothers, or pups, for obvious reasons (holes). Quarter inch holes to eighth inch is a good size, not to small that the 'poop' wont fall out, and not to big that the mice can get out.
Wolf on August 11, 2010:
I was wondering what the best set-up is for commercial breeding ? Is there an ideal kind of container for a larger operation ?
Thanks, Wolf, Brisbane
Info Provider (author) from St. Louis Mo. on July 06, 2010:
cedar bedding will help to kill bacteria and neutralize the foul smell of urine as well as level out the urines PH. this advice is mostly for home or small time breeders, alfalfa hay is best just needs to be changed more often, and may cost more over the long haul. if you live in a city cedar bedding is cheaper, and if your in rural areas hay is cheaper! (Ive been using cedar bedding for 6 years and no probs...but i do add hay for birthing and for the newborn pups bed )
rhonda on July 05, 2010:
I raise mice for feeders. and I have always been taughed NOT to use cedar bedding. But on this sight we are told you can. I also use to raise them for medical research.
Info Provider (author) from St. Louis Mo. on June 03, 2010:
this is normal but some times it takes some time for them to get acquainted, also check the male daily from time to time an aggressive older girl will nip at your male's privet (that's bad) try washing them both with a lite shampoo so they both smell the same, and place them both back in the same container wet. if his pepe has started to swell, remove him and clean him then just a little peroxide on the swollen
area then place him into a container by him self to heal then try again.
savannah on February 18, 2010:
savannah on February 18, 2010:
i have a ? i just got my boy mouse today and my girl mouse about 6 months ago and my girl mouse makes the boy "squek" i don't know if she hurting him and if they cant mate cuz of the females age
Info Provider (author) from St. Louis Mo. on October 30, 2009:
I like to hear ALL Opionions