Mouse plague hits hard

TAKE THE BAIT: The mouse plague hits farmers and landholders in the Riverina and Southern NSW hard. But authorities say it is not as bad as the plague in 2011.
TAKE THE BAIT: The mouse plague hits farmers and landholders in the Riverina and Southern NSW hard. But authorities say it is not as bad as the plague in 2011.

Wagga has had an increase in the pitter patter of little feet in recent weeks.

No, our birth rate has not increased.

But the amount of mice and rats entering Wagga homes has.

The start of winter has brought with it an influx of bold mice entering homes seeking warmth and food.

Numerous residents and businesses have reported sightings of the four-legged rodents inside their homes or sheds.

Mice have been walking over the top of traps, avoiding bait and playing their own cat and mouse games to avoid being captured.

Ian Fyfe from Ian Fyfe Pest Control Pty Ltd said this is not uncommon for this time of year.

“It’s not unusual to see an increase in rodents this time of year,” he said.

“It’s cold and there’s not a lot of coverage for them.

“They are coming in for warmth, shelter and food.”

Mice can squeeze through holes the size of the tip of your little finger and Mr Fyfe said a surefire way to stop them entering the home is to plug up any holes.

“Baiting is the beginning of it but long-term is limiting the access,” he said.

“The fewer access points, the less you have to bait.”

Mr Fyfe advises to buy bait that is single-dose poison and be strategic when placing it about homes and sheds.

Place it around access points and corridors and away from where it can be reached by children and pets.

Alert Pest Control (Riverina) Pty Ltd’s Kerry Steinmetz has noticed an increase in call-outs for mice and rats in the past six weeks, particularly in Kooringal, Glenfield Park and Estella.

He attributes that to the amount to the amount of construction in sub divisions around the city, which have driven the mice from their warm hiding spots.

Even though there seems to be an increase, Wagga and the broader Riverina is a long way from the mice plague from 2011.

Mangoplah agronomist/farmer Don Kirkpatrick baited his sheds in autumn but said there is no evidence of rodents in crops.

“I’ve heard of absolutely no reports of increased mice activity in paddocks,” he said.

  • Have you seen mouse activity in winter crops? Did you take precautions earlier on in the season and bait mice and rats? Have your say at www.therural.com.au 

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