With spring looming, primary producers across the Murrumbidgee are encouraged to start preparing for a surge in mice activity.
And whilst the Murrumbidgee has been mostly spared from the destruction that the mouse plagues have caused across Central NSW, good growing conditions coming into spring will provide mice everything they need reproduce at fast rate.
Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall said it was of "high concern" to see how quickly mice populations had recovered from cooler weather in the past few months.
"Whilst there has been some respite from high mouse numbers across the winter months as breeding slowed, we remain concerned about a spring surge in numbers as the weather warms up," Mr Marshall said.
"It looks like we are going to have good conditions and hopefully a great winter crop, but that also means mice will have everything they need to build populations very quickly in the lead up to harvest."
Manager of Biosecurity and Emergency Services at the Riverina Local Land Services, Michael Leane said that farmers across the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area could realistically expect a significant increase in mice numbers, due to warm weather and the success of the winter cropping season.
"Landholders really do need to start thinking about putting a contingency plan in place to deal with mice," Mr Leane said.
"I would encourage farmers to speak with their rural merchandisers and agronomists to discuss their baiting options, bait availability and the ramifications surrounding use of bait."
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CSIRO scientists have also called the number of mice emerging from winter as surprising with higher than normal numbers.
According to Mr Marshall, early detection was critical to protecting crops.
"Farmers should be walking their paddocks now looking for signs of mice and being prepared to bait if needed," Mr Marshall said.
"Baiting early will help control mouse populations before they start breeding in early spring, as they will more readily take the bait while there is less alternative food available."
To account for this, rebates to the total of $1000 are now available for those impacted to help offset the cost of mouse traps, baits and cleaning materials through the Service NSW website.
Additionally, farmers have the option to claim a 50 percent rebate on zinc phosphide based bait to a maximum of 10,000, through the Rural Assistance Authority.