Worsening mouse plague sees ‘thirsty’ rodents dying in Australian water tanks sparking well being fears


With Southeast Queensland experiencing one of the wettest springs in years, rural residents are concerned about potentially contaminated drinking water after finding poisoned mice in their tanks as mouse plague continues to worsen.

ABC’s Lucy Thackray reports that frustrated landowners continue to try to reduce mouse populations with rigorous bait programs, but the problem shows no signs of slowing.

Louise Hennessy, from Elong Elong in central western New South Wales, warned other rural residents of the potential health effects on humans and animals after finding baited mice in her drinking stash.

She made the discovery while climbing up on her house tank to check for a clog and was instantly overwhelmed by a repulsive odor.

“It was so horrible that I thought it would be a good picture to remind people to be vigilant about their water tanks,” Ms. Hennessy said.

“We always filter the water that flows into our house from the tanks, and for us personally we feel that we took our precautions so that we didn’t notice the taste. But the smell of the mice up in the tank was so disgusting. “

Dubbo regional council’s environmental and health officer, Simone Tenne, said people often did not think of drinking water pollution.

“Rainwater tanks are seen as a clean source of drinking water, but they often contain frogs, insects and a large amount of bird feces that have come down from the roof,” said Ms. Tenne.

“The public health sector recommends that people do some type of treatment, be it chlorination, a little acidification, or some type of filtration, to prevent bacteria from accidentally getting in through drinking contaminated water.”

Ms. Tenne said health problems could be caused by mice in drinking water.