Non-lethal mousetraps by Roger Arquer



Designer Roger Arquer has created a series of conceptual mousetraps that are intended "only to catch mice, not to kill them". Update: this project is included in Dezeen Book of Ideas, which is on sale now for £12.


The four different traps - including Mouse in a Pint (top image) and Mouse in a Light Bulb (above) - are each made of everyday household items.


Arquer first developed the project in 2004 but these images are brand new and have not been published before. Above: Mouse in a Planting Pot. Below: Mouse in a Bottle


Arquer previously designed the Fish Bowls that were one of the most popular stories on Dezeen in the last few months.

Here's some text from Arquer:


By Roger Arquer

These traps have been developed only to catch mice, not to kill them. It leaves up to the catcher the future of the mouse. The materials and the mechanics used are not aggressive, which makes it a friendly mousetrap. Clear glass, metal springs, paper clips, metal nut.

The concept was developed for a very simple, elegant and efficient way to catch mice. They are almost not being seen as traps, but as altered objects to be used for another reason. Once the mice problem is solved, the objects can be used again for its original function. These are generic clear glass objects that we have at home: a pint glass, a light bulb, a bottle and a planting pot.



Mouse in a Pint (above) is a beer glass upside down. It has a breadstick attached to a spring, tilting the glass so the mouse can get in. Once the breadstick is being nibbled, it breaks and the glass collapses, keeping the mouse inside.





Mouse in a Light Bulb (above) is a cut big light bulb with a heavy weigh in the bottom. The container is positioned horizontal with the nut, held by a paper clip. Once the mouse steps in, the nut is released and the light bulb tilts straight up, catching the mouse inside. Of course, this one can’t be reused as light bulb again.



Mouse in a Bottle (above) is a medium size soy sauce bottle. This is positioned horizontally with a tapered spring in the neck. The mouse squeezes in, expanding the end of the spring, to be able to get inside the bottle. Once inside, it cannot go back out because it can not expand the spring from inside. It works like a lobster trap or a Chinese finger trap.




Mouse in a Planting Pot (above) is a glass planting pot which has a long spring attached on the top going down outside. Once the mouse climbs up and goes at the end of the spring, the spring bends in and the mouse falls inside the container, when it releases the spring. It gets caught since the spring has returned to its original position.

Posted on Monday October 22nd 2007 at 10:36 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • I disagree with the first trap (mouse in a pint) because when the glass comes down it becomes selled, andthe mouse can consume all the oxygen inside, probably killing him.

    The second i disagree is the “mouse in a bottle”, because the agressive of the design of the system, the mouse can enter, but in then inside there is a dangerous and cutting spring apoointing directly to him, notify what looks like the face of the mouse, inside the trap… looking with rage the defiant tool… it could make a psycological trauma on the mouse, because of this, i consider this method not appropiate.

    For me the bests designs are mouse on a light bulb and mouse on a planting pot which surprised me for the good quality of the designs and the photos… i’m thinking to bild one… ok, greeteings to the author.

  • mister proper

    Bien , parece ser que el pobre raton queda encerrado dentro de una jaula cristalina , que horrible debe sentirse el animalito , aunque por otra parte , por que cojones se mete dentro?

  • joao

    nice work!!! ;)))
    itellegence and work…

  • armando

    si alguien sabe de planos o argo pa hacerse caja de skinner o argo asín pa maltrato…. q avise >_<



  • Vortix

    Great work!!!!!!!

    Once it’s on the glass I can test my .44 magnum on the stupid mouse and see all it’s guts splatter all over the room!!!!!!!!

    THANKS FOR THE GRRRRRREAT IDEA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • k falso jeje k es boma muy xulo
    dew poner mas

  • Cristhian

    Puede que en alguna de las trampas muera el ratón sin necesidad de que hagamos nada, o por lo menos que con la del ratón de la botella quede tuerto, que bien!!!

  • Amira Sarita

    Hijos de Puta! porqe le hacen eso a los ratones?
    Yo adoro a esos peqeños roedores

  • arrest this animal!!! this is what it get= mess but its funny work..

  • ricktf


  • just me

    About the mouse in the pint, has no one noticed that when the pint comes down, it is resting on the wire of the spring, keeping it from forming a seal? The mouse is in no danger of suffocation. As for the mouse jumping out of flower pot and lightbulb, yes, that could be a problem.

  • hooz who in the zoo

    wats with the mouses

  • boo to u

    hey wats with all the mouse traps

  • huh

    whatever happened to just putting cheese in a very tall plastic pail and a wooden ramp leading up to it?

  • burak mestan

    great art of mousetraps

  • Margo

    Great art, but not very practical.
    I use a large milk bottle with a wooden
    ramp. Brown bread as bait.
    Works reasonably.

  • Chi Chi

    I could not bring myself to use a real lethal mouse trap and these are perfect

  • TG

    I don’t think any of these are very well thought out. I am interested in no-kill traps, but every design I see anywhere assumes mice can’t jump. Has anyone designing this stuff ever actually seen a mouse that wasn’t domesticated? These are very artsy, but guaranteed not to work.

  • jessie

    I love these but, there is one problem with the last one
    MICE CAN JUMP!!!! (at least field mice can)

  • greg

    great idea but i dont know to many people who have problems with gerbils. mice yes, gerbils no


    i love it

  • macka

    hi great ideaz man cant wait to get rid of the mice problem!!!!

  • Anchorena

    ho!! man its very invetion but you are a estupid man because you are e loser !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Velma

    Brilliant and elegant!

    Also, the mouse you’ve used is so cute and CLEAN!!! I think I’m falling in love with mice now! LOL

  • John

    Three good ways to deal with caught meeses:

    Drop on an anvil and smash with three pund hammer

    Put in a bag and drop into rain barrell

    Drop them one at a time in front of a hungry cato

  • ddrew

    Are your mice retarded ? They must be slightly challenged if jumping out of a pint glass poses such an insurmountable obstacle. LOL

  • Michael

    The following might work – a narrow tube with one end covered with transparent plastic sealed with tape, with weights on the outside of this end. The middle of this tube is placed on a hinge. The mouse runs into the end of the roll, looking for food – it’s weight tips the roll into a vertical position.

    I just caught a mouse using the hollow tube part, so extending this might work.

  • NRN_R_Sumo1

    the lightbulb is quite clever, but the othertraps aside from the pint can all be easily avoided with a mouse cleverer than that gerbil. ;D

  • gerbil

    This is gerbil, not mouse.

  • Captain Obvious

    I think we have efficiently made three points:
    1) It is a girbil, not a mouse.
    2) Mice can jump.
    3) Point two causes a problem with “Planting Pot” and “Light Bulb”.
    I do not feel it is neccessary to recall these points to the artist once every three comments. In addition to this, the description clearly labels these as conceptual mousetraps. I’m not sure if those who have commented in the past didn’t know how to read, were too lazy to read, or if the fact is simply that the only life they have is mocking others. (cough, cough anchorena cough)
    Also, a note to Bernat Ferrer, the spring used in “Bottle” could easily be fitted with a blunt edge on the inside and still serve its purpose while still preserving the safety of the mouse. As to the mouse (girbil)’s face… I see no more rage here than in any of the other pictures…

    All that aside, lovely work. I personally think “Bottle” is the best of them, it is so simple in design and the principle can be applied so many different ways.

  • w

    These designs didnt work – Roger ended up calling exterminator instead.

    So theoretically clever but completely useless design in reality.

  • Juaz

    Jaja, the best way is shotting in the head with a bb5 shootgun blowing the brain in the wall

  • shelliedrez

    I have 13 cats but for some reason i have a mouse problem now.never had problems til recently.strange.the more cats and more snacks i stock up on the more likely of having a mouse?i hate seeing any animal suffer but an insect,who cares if its ugly.ha ha.i like your ideas.i will try the one with a small jar first.i ave tacosauce do you get a lightbulb unscrewed witut using a glasscutter and cuting yourself?

  • Flubberboy

    None of those work.

    Glass: is too small. The mouse is fast enough. When it falls down, the mouse still can get half way under the glass, and eventually will escape.

    Light bulb: the edge can be reached by the mouse. She will grab it and the bulb will tilt down. Mouse gets away.

    Bottle: the Mouse won’t go in.

    Mouse in planting pot: She will be able the grab the spring and not fall. Even if she falls, she can jump out. Mice can jump very high.

  • fatteeth

    I have seen the glass one being sold by Thorsten Van Elten ! Great! Well done.

  • HO

    These are just excellent! I really like the light bulb one, fantastic!

  • These are absolutely brrrr-iliant ideas! (The mouse is pretty cute as well!)

  • sebastian

    que varbaridad de trampas

  • A.V.

    Any of these can work. The planting plot one i see every one complaining about put some oil or cooking spray at the bottom and the mouse wont be able to get footing to jump out. Cant jump if your sliding left and right.

  • Cool! How did the mouse get in the bottle?

  • rto

    Someone modified the same idea and won a 2011 design award, brilliant rip-off.

  • some amazing pictures there, really inspiring images with the mouse in various capacities

  • Rid-O-Mice

    Love the use of the rounded edge bottle, that is brilliant.