Minister Adam Marshall announces Central West workshops for farmers battling mouse plague

MORE SUPPORT: Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall (inset) announced extra mice management workshops for farmers battling the plague across the state.
MORE SUPPORT: Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall (inset) announced extra mice management workshops for farmers battling the plague across the state.

Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall announced a new series of mice management workshops to be held following the success of nine previous events, to assist farmers still battling the mice plague across parts of the state.

Mr Marshall said 16 extra workshops have been scheduled between May 12 and 26 after the nine initial events were fully subscribed to and well-received by producers looking to strengthen their on-farm mice management.

A number of Central West centres will host a workshop this month including Mudgee, Cumnock, Young, Condobolin, Ballimore and West Wyalong, along with a number farther afield like Narrabri, Lake Cargelligo, Bingara and Goolgowi - among others.

The workshops are being funded by the NSW Government with operational support from the NSW Department of Primary Industries and Local Land Services, with CSIRO expert Steve Henry to provide advice.

"It is critical farmers have access to the best tools and information to manage mice and that's exactly what we're giving them," Mr Marshall said.

"Australia's leading mice expert, Steve Henry from the CSRIO ... is a powerful asset in our arsenal who has been researching mice for over 25 years.

"We know from reports right across the state that having access to the latest mice management techniques and baiting advice can make a real impact on the ground which is critical as landholders prepare for winter sowing.

"Each workshop is being hosted by the local community and I'm pleased to see the DPI, LLS, the Grains Research and Development Corporation, CSIRO and our community groups all coming together to help people manage the situation."

The workshops will explain how people can understand how many mice are in their system, recognise early signs of a problem, reduced numbers before sowing, protect crops, control in-crop mouse numbers and manage health implications.

To reach as many people as possible, the DPI will be broadcasting Friday's session at Molong live, also to provide advice and have questions answered in real-time.

"The NSW Government is also working with relevant stakeholders to ensure there is no shortages of baiting products, which has become a real concern in NSW and across Australia," Mr Marshall said.

Mr Marshall said the government was also looking at what new tools may be available for mice control into the future.

"At present, the only mice control measure farmers have access to is poisoning through baiting and, as we've seen recently, that can have varying degrees of success," Mr Marshall said.

"In the medium to long-term, we're looking to have a wider variety and more effective tools for our primary producers to tackle mice plagues.

"Biological controls have been successfully implemented for other pests and given the challenge mice present, I have asked my Department to investigate what future biological controls for mice might look like."

The workshops begin at Mullaley on Wednesday evening. For more information and times and locations of the workshops, people can head to the NSWDPI website.

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This story Minister announces extra support for Central West farmers still battling mouse plague first appeared on Daily Liberal.

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