Keeping your home clean by getting rid of things that attract rats and mice is the best way to deter them.
Rodents are always looking for food, so make sure nothing has been spilled or made available for a hungry critter, especially under cabinets and places that are easy to hide in.
Always clean up leftover food as soon as possible and sweep up crumbs on the floor.
So now your house is clean and the rodents are still around, will the chemical capsicum in hot peppers deter mice and rats?
First of all, capsaicin is the chemical in chili peppers that makes them spicy. Specifically, capsaicin occurs in the fruits of plants in the Capsicum family, including bell peppers, jalapeño peppers, cayenne peppers and other chili peppers.
The hottest of all peppers is the Reaper chilli that is more than 850 times hotter than a jalapeno pepper. The Carolina Reaper pepper has a heat rating of 2.2 million Scoville heat units. Researchers recently added the Carolina reaper (which can bring a grown man to tears) to a mixture of bird seeds. To their surprise, the rats and mice gobbled it all up, peppers and all.
So no, hot peppers do not deter rodents.
Go Green Pest Control owner Randy Bilesky is a long-time South Delta resident. Trained and certified, Bilesky has first-hand knowledge of the pest problems that local homeowners and business owners encounter.