MouseAlert is an online tool which aims to improve early warnings for possible plagues to enable a rapid response to increases in mouse activity.
Western Australian grain growers are encouraged to remain vigilant in monitoring crops for signs of mice during seeding and the growing season, and to make use of the interactive MouseAlert website.
Recent monitoring shows that mouse levels are currently generally low in the WA grainbelt, although some activity has been reported in the Geraldton and Ravensthorpe areas.
CSIRO researcher Steve Henry, who is surveying mice for a Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC)-funded project, said the project could not monitor the full extent of mouse activity and encouraged growers and advisers to report presence, absence and activity levels of the pest using MouseAlert.
“MouseAlert is an online tool which aims to improve early warnings for possible plagues to enable a rapid response to increases in mouse activity,” he said.
“It allows growers to record and view mouse activity in their local area in real time and enables others to see the scale and extent of localised mouse activity. It is even important to report where there are no mice.
“MouseAlert also provides access to fact sheets about mouse control and forecasts of the likelihood for future high levels of mouse activity in each grain-growing region.”
Mr Henry said mouse numbers could increase quickly and growers who noticed significant increases in activity should act quickly to manage them, including applying baits according to label instructions.
Growers can get MouseAlert here or download iPhone and Android FeralScan apps which feature MouseAlert. Progress can be followed on Twitter @MouseAlert.
The GRDC has extended its funding of the monitoring project – a collaboration with CSIRO, NSW Department of Primary Industries and the Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre – for another 18 months.
For information about monitoring mouse activity, contact Steve Henry from CSIRO on 0428 633 844 or via email. Observations can also be directed to Mr Henry via Twitter @MouseAlert. Information about mouse control is available via the MouseAlert website or the GRDC Fact Sheet.
Steve Henry, CSIRO
0428 633 844
GRDC Project Code