INFESTED: Rocky households battle ‘aggressive mice plague’
AN APPARENT mice plague has residents across Rockhampton on high alert and pest control services inundated with numerous weekly call-outs.
The concerning issue first came to light after a Gracemere resident took to social media on Monday evening to query whether other residents had encountered the same issue of late.
Leigh-Anne Van Egmond revealed 14 rodents had been caught at her Lawrie St address in the past four days, adding similar issues had not occurred in the past 10 or so years.
Fellow resident Lesley Matheson also said her family recently returned from a week-long trip to find seven dead mice inside their home - after 30 rodents were located only two weeks prior.
"My estate has a bad plague here too (Gracemere Greens Estate). Pest control said today there's plagues all over the region, they've been flat out," wrote Mikayla Bradshaw.
Rockhampton's PestX owner Scott Lawton this week backed up the claim, confirming an infestation was occurring across the region - though Gracemere proved particularly bad.
"Part of that is because it's a smaller township which borders onto a little bit more field than Rockhampton. It's a smaller area too," he explained.
"It probably is a little bit more an aggressive uptick than last year, but it's not totally unusual."
The pest expert added household hygiene, recent weather events and a transition into breeding season were also direct contributors.
"Now that spring's here, they're looking for a mate. Grass seeds and things like that are a little more prevalent too, so there's plenty of food around with the blooms," Mr Lawton said.
"Really though, it's linked to breeding. Their numbers are just exploding, they're hungry and they like where we live."
He said the significant uptick in rodent activity had resulted in at least one call per day in which a customer complained of a "severe infestation."
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"Some of the things people can do to minimise rodent activity is to remove any food and water sources from around their property."
He suggested regular household cleanliness, management of pet food and the removal of general debris as possible preventive measures.
"Some people like to leave dog food out the entire time rather than placing it down when the dog wants to eat and then taking it away," Mr Lawton said.
"Where there's constant supplies of foods, rodents love that because it's a high source of fat and protein, and they particularly like pet food."
He further suggested the minimisation of small bodies of water around residential properties.
"I suppose it's a little bit similar to how you would manage mosquitoes," he said.
"Get rid of vegetation debris in your yard, they like to live in mulch piles, if people have lots of debris falling from their trees and general items in their yard lying around."
Those suffering with a possible infestation are encouraged to phone PestX on (07) 4936 2093.