Do Mice Come Out During the Day? 5 Reasons Why They Do

Rodent Guide
Written By Rodent Guide

I believe in treating all creatures with respect. My mission is to ensure everyone understands how to protect their home from rodents without using cruel methods.

Mice can cause all kinds of noise in your home. They scurry around, scratching at things in your attic, and keeping you awake at night. But is it just nighttime when mice come out? Do mice come out during the day too?

In this post, we will look at that question and provide some confirmed answers.

What you will learn in this post:

  • Do mice come out during the day?
  • Does it mean there is an infestation?
  • What time are you most likely to see a mouse?
  • When do mice usually sleep?

Why Do Mice Come Out During the Day

Why Do Mice Come Out During the Day? 5 Reasons Here

There are some prevalent reasons you will see a mouse during the day. It isn’t because they like the sun either! Mice do not want to come out in the light because they feel too exposed.

Let’s get onto the 5 reasons you might see a mouse during the day.

1. Need food

If you have seen mice during the day, it is most likely because they are hungry or need to feed their babies and didn’t find any during the hours of sundown.

Usually, a mouse will only go out hunting for food during the evening; however, it will go out during the day if the mouse is particularly hungry.

Why do mice come out during the day? The most likely answer is because they are hungry!

2. Infestation

I do not think you are going to like this reason! One common reason you have seen a mouse during the day is that you have a local infestation.

An infestation may drive the mouse to look for other places to hide during the day. It may even need to find a place to set up the mouse nest! Your house may be a viable target, so watch out.

3. Scared Away

It is fair to say that mice usually come out at night. However, a mouse might venture out during the day because it has sensed a predator nearby and has beaten a hasty retreat.

If you have a cat, or you have noticed a few more birds of prey in the sky than normal, it may be driving the mouse to find somewhere else to hide.

4. Need Water

Similar to food, mice need water to survive. The mouse will venture out during the day to get some water if it is thirsty.

Some mouse poisons will make the mouse thirsty, resulting in the mouse making a daytime appearance to top up on fluid.

5. Nearby Nest Disturbed

If a local nest has been disturbed by a predator, by you, or by another human, then you will see mice during the day in that area because they are looking for another place to hide.

Let’s say you have some work being completed on your house, and what workers disturbed the mouse nest (that you hadn’t noticed was there)? The mouse will escape the nest and find another place to hide.

What Time Do Mice Usually Come Out?

There is no specific time you will see mice or hear mice in your home. It depends entirely on the time of year, sunrise and sunset.

Mice will begin to appear during dusk hours (just after sundown). They can be seen and heard throughout the hours of darkness and will disappear and quiet down again at sunrise.

Why a Mouse Will Not Like To Be Out During the Day

When you see mice during the day, it is not normal behavior. Mice prefer to move around in the dark or under the cover of trees and long grass.

Mice do not like to be out during the day because the light exposes them to predators such as:

  • Cats
  • Birds of prey
  • Dogs

Is It a Sign of a Problem if You See Mice During the Day?

Do mice come out during the day? Yes. Does that mean I have a problem? Maybe.

Just because you have seen one mouse doesn’t mean you have an infestation.

Seeing mice in the daytime can signify more mice around. Seeing one mouse should prompt you into some action. More on that is below.

If You Have Seen Mice During the Day, This is What You Should Do

If you do see mice during the day, then it is a warning that you should pay attention to! It could mean the mouse is looking for another place to set up a nest and might have set sights on your house.

If I saw a mouse during the day, I would do the following:

Why Do Mice Come Out During the Day Infographic

1. Check For Nests

Read the article suggested below and check all these areas to see if you have mouse activity or a mouse nest. If you find a nest, get rid of it!

Recommended reading: Places that mice like to nest in your home.

2. Remove Food

As I mentioned above, mice usually come out in search of food. Although this is most likely to occur after sundown, it can happen at any time, depending on the mouse’s situation.

If you have any easy-to-access food, you should get rid of it or store it correctly. If you store food outside, it should be stored in round glass containers.

Mice can chew through many items, but a thick glass container is mouse-proof.

Food is the biggest thing that attracts a mouse to your home! Do not make it easy for them. Remove the attraction by storing it in a container they cannot access!

3. Check For Entry Points

If you see mice during the day, they may be looking for a way into your home. If the mouse finds a way in, it could set up a nest, give birth, and before you know it, you will have a mouse infestation in your home!

I’m guessing that is something you are keen to avoid, right?

You should check around your property for mouse entry points. If you find any, you should seal them up to keep the mice out!

Do mice come out during the day? Yes – but you can stop them getting access to your home by performing regular inspections around your property for mouse entry points!

When Are Mice Most Active?

Mice are most active from dusk until dawn. During this time, mice feel safe enough to hunt for food, drink, and a place to call home!

It is fair to say that mice are not usually very active during the day when mice prefer to sleep and hide away from predators.

When Do Mice Sleep?

Under normal circumstances, mice sleep during the day.

The hours that mice sleep depend on the sunset and sunrise times. Usually, they settle down when the sun rises and wake up at dusk.

That is not always the case, though!


Do mice come out during the day? Yes, they do. Do they come out regularly during the day? Unlikely!

There are reasons why you have seen a mouse during the day, and the 5 reasons identified in this post are the most common.

I have written a guide on understanding how to get a mouse out of hiding if you want to know how to do that. But you might also want to prep against an infestation.

Ultimately, it would help if you prepared for a mouse invasion by sealing up those mouse entry points you may have around your house.

When it comes to mouse control – prevention is better than a cure!

If you have left it too late, you should follow a complete guide to getting rid of mice.

Don’t forget that mice can carry some diseases that they can transmit to humans!

Good luck!


About the Rodent Guide

I’m an expert in do-it-yourself rodent control. For more than 20 years, I’ve dedicated my life to helping people live harmoniously alongside these critters by sharing rodent control solutions that are effective and kind.

I believe in treating all creatures with respect. My mission is to ensure everyone understands how to protect their home from rodents without using cruel methods.

4 thoughts on “Do Mice Come Out During the Day? 5 Reasons Why They Do”

  1. One night, I saw in my apartment a little black mouse run out from under the heat register, into the kitchen and behind the fridge. Pest control came and put out two traps with poison. Two weeks later, one night I saw a little black mouse run around my apartment, then back to the register. I heard some intermittent squeaking for a while, then it became quiet. Who was he talking to? Did the mouse (mice) become immune to the posion? How do I get rid of them?! I’m also curious: What do mice do all day?

    • I wish I knew what mice spoke to Len! 🙂 It is likely the mouse either hadn’t eaten the poison yet, or had only just eaten the poison (it can take a while to kill a mouse, depending on which poison). As for what mice do during the day, they sleep mostly! Here is a guide on where mice sleep during the day if you want to hunt them down. Good luck!

  2. I saw a mouse and called pest control company after setting multiple traps and setting poison stations outside we only caught one mouse. Then I saw another. I have lots of traps of all kinds in my house and have not caught another mouse. I sealed up most openings I could find and then today I saw one outside at 5:30 PM it’s still light out and he was looking for bird seed outside on my walkway. I scared him and he ran into the bushes. I also find holly seeds in my house are they coming in and out? I can’t think of another explanation.

    • Hi

      It is possible they are still coming in and out of your house. Are there any more signs? Have you checked around the entire property for entry points? It is a challenge to find them all. You are doing the right thing with traps. Change the bait on a regular basis, and always wear gloves when touching the traps. Also – be careful when handling the traps!


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