Mice are most problematic in low rainfall cereal-growing areas, where mouse plagues occur at irregular intervals of four to six years.
The introduced house mouse should not be confused with native rodents or 'marsupial mice'.
Outlook for Summer 2019 and Autumn 2020
Mouse numbers are currently low across cereal-growing areas in South Australia, largely because of the prolonged dry conditions.
There is a:
low risk of widespread mouse damage to crops leading into harvest
chance of isolated patches of mouse activity that may not be picked up from CSIRO’s national monitoring program.
Growers are advised to monitor their own farms and across multiple paddocks to gauge mouse numbers to inform their management decisions.
CSIRO provides further information on recent mouse activity across Australia ().
Various mouse control options include:
- The reduction of food sources especially spilled grain and weeds.
- The reduction of available shelter.
- Poison baiting especially at sowing.
- Monitoring for an increase in:
- mouse sightings
- the number of burrows
- crop damage
- birds of prey.
Detailed mice control techniques are available on the:
- Mouse management fact sheet (GRDC website)
- PestSmart Connect website
- Mouse control in and around buildings fact sheet ()
When using poison baits it is a legal requirement under the Agricultural and Veterinary Products (Control of Use) Act 2002 to:
- use registered bait products
- follow label instructions
- not possess or use 'home-made' baits.
A number of registered bait products are available to control mice. Your local chemical retailer will be able to advise you on the right product for your situation.
Mouse bait mixing stations
Mouse bait mixing stations allow farmers to have poison bit mixed into their own grain. Contact your nearest mixing station for information:
- Cootra – JS and VA Matthews, phone: 0428 563 352
- Cowell – AB and SL Franklin, Eastern Eyre Seed Grading, phone: 08 8629 2140
- Kimba – Agsave Merchandise Pty Ltd, phone: 08 8627 2227
- Lock – LR and CA Wiseman, phone: 0427 891 052
- Wudinna – Lylal Pty Ltd, phone: 0429 802 167
- Balaklava – DC and PD Shepherd, Balview Plains, phone: 0427 859 716
- Cunliffe – Mark Anthony Schilling, Ag Schilling and Co., phone: 08 88825 7224
- Kadina – Paul March, NYP Rural Trading, phone: 0428 213 546
- Minlaton – Scott Hoyle, GGS Hoyle and Co., phone: 0417 666 556
Mouse control advice
For advice on mouse control specific to your situation, contact your local agronomist.
Using poison baits
Biosecurity SA Rural Chemicals Operations
Phone: 1300 799 684