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Mice/Hi again!...and a question about one of the females


it's Miriam, the 11 (well actually twelve now!) year old with ten mouse babies! (well, not exactly babies anymore, they grow so fast)

Anyway, just wanted you to know that except for one thing that I will get to later on, everything went PERFECTLY!!!

Here is an update on them:

The mice are all separated, and 2 females(Starr and Phillie)
were adopted by my friend.
All the males: Hail, Reovis, Blizzard, Boulder, and the father Mowta, are in 5 gallon tanks and doing fine.
The mouse nanny Rain was a great nanny all the way through, and now her and the mother Sky are in a 20 gallon tank I just got.

The 4 female babies that are left: Starlight, Yatabow, and Meta
(I am keeping Starlight and Yatabow is my mom's mouse) are in the 20 gallon with the adult females.

Now here is my question:

One of the young females, Meta, was a fine, friendly mouse before weening.
Then I took her from the 10 gallon where she grew up, and put her in the 20 gallon with her mother and the other females when she was a month old, and she was still a fine friendly mouse.

The 20 gallon looked a little crowded with six females in there, so I moved the two adults back to the 10 gallon.

That's when Meta started biting.

Almost every time I put my hand in front of her, she lunges out like lightening trying to nip me.

I figuered that she missed the adults and was scared without them, even though she didn't need their milk, so I moved them back.

She kept trying to bite.

What do you think could be wrong with her?


She looks healthy, and acts happy other than the biting.


This is all great news, aside from the biting!

When Meta lunges at you, is your hand by any chance coming from above?  Mice, especially young mice, have very strong instincts warning them against threats that come at them from above (birds, snakes, other predators striking from over their head).  Sometimes when your hand reaches into the tank they get very scared that you are going to eat them and may bite (or run, or "pop," etc.).

Mice are individuals, and will handle stress differently.  I don't think that anything is wrong with her, but it's definitely not a fun habit to have picked up.  It is important to remain calm around her and not make sudden movements, and also to avoid situations that would allow her to nip at you whenever possible.  You might try offering a treat after any time you put your hand in the cage, whether to change the water, add food, play with another mouse, just to let her know that it is going to be okay, and leave her alone whenever she goes to her hide for privacy.

Has she been biting other mice, or just you?



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I can answer questions regarding mice as pets, mouse behavior, color and coat genetics, breeding techniques, and general health questions. I can help with caging and setup, nutrition, social issues, and what to do in most mouse emergencies (such as unplanned litters, injuries, fighting, etc.). I can also assist with questions pertaining to orphaned mouse pups, weaning litters, and questions of mating and birthing. I cannot answer questions about exotic or wild varieties of mice such as spiny or pygmy mice. *****FOR EMERGENCIES, anything requiring immediate medical intervention, PLEASE take your mouse to a professional veterinarian or wildlife rehabilitator who works with mice as soon as possible! IMPORTANT RESOURCES: Raising Orphaned Mice: Orphaned Mice Videos: Natasha's Your First Mouse: General Mouse Help: Mouse Info and Exotic Breeds:


I have enjoyed the companionship of mice nonstop since 2004, and spent a year caring for them in a lab where I learned a great deal about their breeding, social needs, and health. I spent a few years breeding them, specifically working with albinos, marked mice, angora mice, and satins. My education never stopped - I am learning something new every day from current and well-established research thanks to the wonderful folks at the Jackson Laboratory, as well as from my wonderful mousey friends online. I also love learning from my terrific questioners here on AllExperts - you folks keep my passion for these amazing animals alive and well!

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