Mice - having the
ability to dwell in any man made environment, the common house
mouse can present problems for libraries. House mice can destroy
library items for the purposes of gathering materials for nesting.
The population of house mice can build up quickly as the male
becomes sexually mature in 35 days. The female can have a litter
(consisting of 6 mice) approximately every 50 days. The dead
carcasses of house mice can also serve as a food source for carpet
Rats - have similar destructive qualities
to libraries, but are generally not a great risk of appearing
in a collection. The
most likely candidate of rat to turn up in library would
be the Norway rat. The Norway rat is usually found in urban
Like the house mouse, they gnaw and burrow into library books.
Rats can also gnaw into structural timbers, doors, windows,
and other building elements to gain access to food, water,
and nesting sites.