Deer Mouse


Actual Size: 5 to 8” long including the tail

Characteristics: Gray to reddish-brown. Distinctive white feet and underbelly.

Habitat: Typically remains outdoors and builds nests in trees or logs. If indoors, they often stick to wall voids and other secluded, sheltered areas.


  • Prefers to nest outdoors and are more common in rural areas.
  • Also called “field mice” or “white-footed mice”.
  • Capable of transmitting the Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome.

Deer Mice in Memphis TN Metro Area

Deer mice, also known as field mice or white-footed mice, can be found across North America. While they have a preference for woodlands, they have also established their presence in desert regions. Typically, deer mice are primarily found in outdoor environments, particularly in rural areas, and they seldom invade residential properties. However, they can become an issue in agricultural areas, occasionally seeking shelter in homes during the winter. The significant concern with deer mice lies in their role as common carriers of hantavirus. These mice feed during the transitional periods of dusk and dawn and display a preference for insects, seeds, nuts, and berries.

Deer Mouse Habitat

Deer mice are creatures of the night, exhibiting nocturnal behavior while spending their daylight hours in cup-shaped nests crafted from stems, leaves, and other fibrous materials. These nests are often lined with feathers or shredded cloth and can be discovered in various locations, including tree hollows, fence posts, abandoned squirrel and bird nests, as well as the undersides of logs and rocks. When inside homes, deer mice prefer to construct their nests in areas with low activity, such as basements, attics, garages, and crawl spaces. Unlike some animals, deer mice do not hibernate and may seek shelter within residential properties during the winter months. They may take up residence in storage boxes, wall voids, or even upholstered furniture.

Deer Mouse Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

For the majority of the year, deer mice establish their nests in tranquil, dimly lit, and undisturbed outdoor areas. However, as winter approaches and temperatures drop, deer mice have a tendency to invade homes, garages, sheds, and occasionally vehicles. Once indoors, they are commonly discovered in basements or attics. The most significant danger associated with deer mice is their capability to transmit the perilous hantavirus, which can potentially be fatal. This disease is often spread through contact with deceased mice or by inhaling airborne urine droplets from infected deer mice.

If you have a deer mouse infestation in your Memphis TN Metro Area property, always contact a licensed rodent control company.