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Of Mice and Pigs: Plague Threatens Australian Livestock

Farmers in Adelaide, Australia are having a bit of a rodent problem. The mouse population has grown to epic proportions due to recent heavy rains and booming crop yields--perfect conditions for an infestation. It's so bad that one farmer, John Gregory, has caught the mice attacking his pigs.
Since he first saw them dining out on his prized stock he has been at his wit's end about how to get rid of them, the (Adelaide) Sunday Mail reported.

Now, as a desperate last resort, he is covering his pigs at a farm property in Wynarka, 80 miles (130km) east of state capital Adelaide, in engine oil to protect them from the mice -- with the rodents apparently turned off by the taste.

"The mouse problem got really bad in April," the 50-year-old father of four said.

"We went away in the school holidays and when we came back we drove up the driveway and it looked like the ground was moving -- there were hundreds of thousands of them."

Mouse bait isn't cheap, though, so farmers are utilizing homemade methods of pest control; aside from rubbing his pigs in engine oil, Gregory mixes confectioner's sugar with cement. "The icing sugar attracts the mice, they eat it and then the cement clogs them up."

Link |Image: Wikipedia Commons

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