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When a dormouse moves into your home, it can be the start of a nerve-wracking period. Usually the animal or even several nests in the attic and the noise usually starts when you want to go to sleep. Sooner or later the dormouse will disappear again. One problem with this is that he's under protection and can't be killed. Catching it and releasing it back into nature is the only option. We show which baits can be used to successfully catch dormouse.

Catch dormouse

Without knowing anything about the dormouse (Glis glis), it is almost impossible to successfully capture it.

  • hibernates
  • Rodent, therefore damage to wood or other furnishings possible
  • mostly nocturnal
  • Tree-dweller, climbs well, even on vertical surfaces
  • also finds small entry opportunities
  • loners or family groups
  • Reproductive season begins a month after hibernation
  • in warm attics, hibernation may fail
  • eats seeds, shoots, buds, leaves, nuts, native fruit
  • well developed sense of smell
  • live traps that are too small are not used
  • Tail can be dropped
  • good sense of direction

The rodents are under nature protection in Germany. Nevertheless, dormouse can be caught provided it is done using a live trap, i.e. the animals must not be killed or injured. Killing him and getting caught can be very expensive depending on your state. Since the animals rarely appear individually in the house, it is usually necessary to capture several, so patience is required.

live traps

These are available in different sizes in the trade or from the local hunter or forester. With a bit of luck, you can borrow them there and get a few tips on how to use the traps correctly or on various methods of catching the dormouse without harming them. If you suspect that there are several animals, you can set up several traps. The same applies if the attic or the room in which the bilches are located is very large.

How to find the right trap:

  • big enough for a dormouse
  • he must still be able to move in it after the catch
  • Grid as small as possible mesh size
  • The flap must not close tightly so as not to endanger the tail

How to properly set the trap:

  • the traps do not have to be hidden
  • Attach bait to the trap
  • Open the flap and fasten accordingly
  • don't forget to check regularly

After being caught, the animal is released into the wild. However, the place should be as far away as possible, the minimum distance is about 10 km. Or there is an obstacle in the way that the animal cannot overcome, such as: a lake, a river, a city or a mountain.

If possible, avoid catching the glis glis with your hands or picking it up by the tail. On the one hand, the rodent can bite sensitively, and on the other hand, the animal can lose its tail.


Whichever bait is used, care should be taken to minimize human odors. Therefore, wear gloves when preparing or attaching the bait in the trap.

Forbidden are all kinds of poison baits, since this rodent is protected. They are also not recommended for other reasons. If the animal is poisoned and dies in some hole or niche, it becomes difficult to locate and dispose of the carcass before the stench of decay becomes unbearable. Also, be careful when catching the dormouse during the breeding season. Orphaned young animals may be left behind, dying without care.


The Bilche prefer local fruit above all. Pieces of apple or slices of pear are particularly popular and also lure the animals into a trap. Some of the rodents also go for other fruits, for example bananas or peaches, but exotic fruits are usually scorned. The disadvantage of fruit is that it does not stay fresh. It has to be replaced regularly, if it begins to mold or rot, the animals will no longer accept it. Since dormouse have a good sense of smell, unripe fruit is not as attractive to them as fully ripe ones.


Basically, dormouse do not eat vegetables, it is not on their menu. Still, you can try using ripe, raw chunks of vegetables to catch them. If the animals are curious, they may also try unfamiliar vegetables. This works particularly well as a lure when the glis glis can hardly get any other food. The same applies to vegetables as to fruit, they must be changed regularly.

Animal food baits

Edible dormouse feed mainly on plants, but sometimes also eat insects or even, like the squirrel, bird eggs or young birds. Dried mealworms, for example, can be used to attract them. These are difficult to attach loosely in the trap, so they are mixed with a little melted lard to form a compact mass. Once it has cooled down and solidified, it can be diced and placed in the trap as bait.

tip: Animal lard is basically well suited to form other feeds that are attractive to the dormouse into a mass. An alternative to this is coconut oil.

Not suitable are:

  • cheese
  • bacon
  • sausage, ham
  • meat

tree seeds

Edible dormouse like to eat nuts, acorns, beechnuts and other tree fruits. These can be used as bait, but the best time to catch the small rodent is already past when the tree seeds are ripe. However, if a dormouse lives in the attic and is to be captured after hibernation, you can collect some of the fruit in the fall.


  1. Collect various tree fruits, preferably when they have just fallen from the tree. Beechnuts are a favorite food of rodents.
  2. The seeds are dried; for this it is sufficient to lay them out in a single layer in a warm room for some time.
  3. Transfer them to nets or cloth bags for storage, after which they can be hung in a dry place.
    caution: Other pests also like nuts and seeds as food.
  4. If tree fruits are to be used as a lure to capture the dormouse, they are removed from their shells and then mixed with liquid lard.
  5. Allow the mass to cool and set, then cut into pieces and place in the trap.

cereals and muesli

Although grain kernels are not suitable as attractants, processed grains can be attractive to bilch. Bread works particularly well, possibly with a sweet topping such as jam. Granola or oatmeal cookies are sometimes accepted as well. A muesli mass can also be easily made yourself:

  1. Use different components of muesli as ingredients, such as nuts, oatmeal and dried fruit or raisins. Peanut butter, nut cream or lard and a little water are suitable for binding.
  2. Mix all ingredients in a bowl with a spoon (not with your bare fingers). The "dough" should not be too thin, but be kneadable.
  3. Form small balls which can then be placed in the trap to attract.

Advice on prevention: If you give the bilch enough nesting places and food in the garden, you can usually avoid it being interested in the house at all.

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