building a tastier mousetrap

Forget cheese. It’s chocolate that drives mice wild, and now, it seems, to their deaths. Researchers from the University of Warwick in England, in collaboration with Sorex Ltd., a manufacturer of pest control products in Cheshire, have developed a chocolate-scented mousetrap. But, before they could give the phrase death by chocolate a literal meaning, they had to figure out what scents mice like best: The researchers tested cheese, vanilla, and chocolate, and found that most mice prefer chocolate. The researchers also helped Sorex develop the technology that would allow the company to inject chocolate essence into the plastic during the production process so that no bait is required for the trap. In a press release, Sorex rodent control product manager Martina Flynn stated: “New developments are key to the future of rodent control both in the UK and overseas, and the project shows the importance of research in rodenticide technology to provide forward thinking solutions.” We couldn’t have said it better ourselves.

This news brief appeared in the Random Data column of the Boston Globe’s Health/Science section on 7/22/2003.
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