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We had a nice Saturday here in Wa, so I decided to mow the yard. While checking the oil and visually inspecting the engine of my JD LT133 I saw a mouse run out from under the shroud, then I could see mouse droppings about. I took the plastic shroud as well the metal one in front of the piston and WOW what a mess! Along with grass that was stuck between the cooling fins there was shreds of my shop rags, paper and even cat food. I put on a paper mask and safety goggles and blew it out with compressed air. What a mess. I could only imagine the results had I not seen that mouse, so just a word to the wise this spring when you begin mowing.
 

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Check all your wiring....main harness and switch leads.....the little knuckleheads love to chew insulation. We get a tractor with electrical problems about every 3-4 months that has had rat-itis. Sometimes its obvious........sometimes its not.

Once had to take all the dash screen,fenders,floorpan ,etc off a 3000 Cub that had harness wire chewed from the top along the frame. Another tractor harness was such a mess..........all we could do was replace it.
 

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I have and LT150 and did not think there was a spot big enough in the shroud they could craw in. Thanks for the heads up, I will keep a closer eye on that from now on.
I already had a similar experience on my mother's 95' Eighty-Eight Olds. I was checking the oil and noticed a trail of sunflower seeds on the fender. Upon closer inspection they'd went under the plastic cover over the engine block and built a nest. Fortunately she mainly does short 15 minute drives as it appeared to have been there for a few weeks. If she had went on a long trip it most likely would have caught fire. I blew it all out with the air hose and expected to see chewed wiring but found none. She was very lucky.

Mark
 

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Thats it I am calling PETA... There are to many homeless mice in thisworld already and you want to use air hoses to blow them away...What has this world come to:furious:
 

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When I had my JD80, if it was parked too long in the shed and you started it up, it sounded like a thrashing machine. MIce would get up inside the muffler and store stuff, and it would start banging around and flying out the exhaust when yu started it.

On my JD GX335, last winter I pulled it into the shop, and my friend noticed strings etc hanging out from the engine cowls. I started to pull the strings etc out, but was getting nowhere. I removed the shrouds, and the entire space between the cylinder banks, and all around the flywheel was packed full of insulation, shredded materials and food stock.........It virtually blocked the majority of any cooling air flow. Luckily it was not used and the little it was used was in cold weather and of very short duration.

We have problems with the cxritters getting in the air cleaners in the wifes Camry, as well as my pickup truck. They literally pack the entire air cleaner full of acorns etc, and I have already had one air filter cartridge chewed through.
 

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Sounds like you guys need a couple of cats.
 

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:ditto:

That was my thought too Joe. I haven't had any problems since we got a couple barn cats that live outdoors most of the time. I thought I was going to have to get a new one as the old one is about 9 years old but I saw it snatch a bird from the mouth of my 120 lb dog while he was playing with it so fast he didn't even see her go by!

Andy
 

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Cats may not be the answer

Way Back when I had a 1970 Monte Carlo, nice car I might add. One night I came home from work about 6 pm it was dark and cold. I went in the house had supper then got ready to go bowling. At 7:30 I started my car and was giving it a minute in the cold weather , All of the sudden I hear this terrible metalic noise followed by a scream that sounded like an angry baby. The neighbor's cat had crawled in the shroud and laid down next to the warm radiator, It got scared when the car started and tried to come out the same way it went in. I had to shoot the cat as the neighbor got sick and was useless, it was a mess. I then had to straighten out my fan blades, but no further damage.
 

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Before the start of the season last year, I was planning on rebuilding the 12 HP B&S in my POS Central Park. I pushed it into the garage and took the shroud off to see the model and serial numbers to call for parts. I could not believe the amount of stuff crammed inbetween the shroud and cooling fins from mice.

The little Cub stays in the garage, and recently I took off the shroud just to clean it up...no mice. :)

Squirrels will also gnaw on wires. They chewed through a bunch of the insulation on the ignition module wiring on my old F100.

Greg
 

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The biggest vermine problem I ever had was chipmunks. I used to have a small greenhouse (8' x 12') and they tunneled in and proceded to dig in EVERY flat of plants I had. They also dug up all my tulip, and iris bulbs that were planted outside the perimeter of the greenhouse and chewed them all up. I put poison in their holes, I set rat traps with peanutbutter bait, I shot them and stuffed their little carcasses down in the holes and the destruction continued. I got a little nutty like Bill Murray's caracter in Caddy Shack, and escalated my attack. I even ran one down and stomped it to death. Eventually I won, but the effort was draining. I ended up digging around the entire perimiter of the greenhouse and laying down a heavy galvanized 1/2" mesh screen to prevent them access to the inside of the greenhouse and still kept several traps in the greenhouse for the ones that still sneaked in. One or two chipmunks are cute, but soon you will have 50 . Mice are even better at reproduction! Two become 20 which quickly become 200 or more, as much as the food supply will support. A good cat or terrier dog is worth their weight in gold at eliminating rodents. My current cat unfortunately brings me her kills to share. I know she does it because she loves me, but my loving wife does not understand that. All she sees is a bloody dead mouse on the floor and freaks out.
 

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I dont have a problem with mice they have to many cats around my house. My problem is cats i have about five of them that arent mine:mad: I need to get rid of them guess i have to get a cage and hall them off.
 
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