Skip to comments.US gov't to air-drop toxic mice on Guam snakes
Posted on 02/22/2013 4:04:20 PM PST by traumer
ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam (AP) - Dead mice laced with painkillers are about to rain down on Guam's jungle canopy. They are scientists' prescription for a headache that has caused the tiny U.S. territory misery for more than 60 years: the brown tree snake.
Most of Guam's native bird species are extinct because of the snake, which reached the island's thick jungles by hitching rides from the South Pacific on U.S. military ships shortly after World War II. There may be 2 million of the reptiles on Guam now, decimating wildlife, biting residents and even knocking out electricity by slithering onto power lines.
More than 3,000 miles away, environmental officials in Hawaii have long feared a similar invasion - which in their case likely would be a "snakes on a plane" scenario. That would cost the state many vulnerable species and billions of dollars, but the risk will fall if Guam's air-drop strategy succeeds.
"We are taking this to a new phase," said Daniel Vice, assistant state director of U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services in Hawaii, Guam, and the Pacific Islands. "There really is no other place in the world with a snake problem like Guam."
Brown tree snakes are generally a few feet (1 meter) long but can grow to be more than 10 feet (3 meters) in length. Most of Guam's native birds were defenseless against the nocturnal, tree-based predators, and within a few decades of the reptile's arrival, nearly all of them were wiped out.
(Excerpt) Read more at myfoxdc.com ...
Well, this one is pretty close...
Hmm...no impact to birds.....right?
I love the smell of dead mice in the morning!
Poor kittehs . . .
Brownies are not fussy,,,and the dropprd mice are fitted with cordage designed to foul in the tree branches, special for the snakes.
Thanks for the info.
Wall Street Journal had a pretty detailed article about this. The snakes ate all the birds, so that’s not really an issue. THe brown snake also eats dead animals. The article said they’ve had success doing this on a smaller scale.
Hey, maybe they could just dump all the dead mice on one end of the island, and tip all the snakes into the ocean.
“acetaminophen, which is harmless to humans.”
Perhaps this is why the Russians buzzed Guam with their nuclear bombers...........
Well Hank Johnson has already asked the Admiral if Guam is in danger of tipping over due to an excess number of military personell.
Sadly not making it up.
This explains all the anti-aircraft gun sales to Guam. Look at the recipient....”Mr. I. M. Brownsnake”. We’ve got to warn the pilots! It’s just like Macho Grande all over again! Those boys, and dead drug-laden vermin, are flying right into an ambush! Where are the Wild Weasels? I know I’m just a kid, well, a really old kid, but somebody has to take this old crate out and clear a path for those brave guys in the bombers! I guess it’s up to me! Chief! Did you wind the rubber band good and tight? Rodger! Well, it’s off into the wild blue yonder. Tell Daisy that I’ll be holding her picture as I go in on my strafing run. Tally-HO!
“Unlike most snakes, brown tree snakes are happy to eat prey they didn’t kill themselves”
I’ll never get over Macho Grande...
Pull yourself together! Those dead vermin need our help. You’re the best wingman in the.............well........you’re the best wingman here right now. I know they blew the wings off your plane at Macho Grande, but you don’t always need wings to fly! OK, they blew up your fuselage and engine and tail, but they didn’t get your lunchbox! Now get up there and fly this mission for that lunchbox! Hoist that thermos, with the little red plastic cup, up high and let’s show those stinkin’ brown snakes what we’re made of!
They are so going to kill all the cats on Guam. Snakes not so much I bet.
They’re about 30 years too late.
The Kamikaze mice battalion. It's a suicide mission. But they'll be heroes back home.
A cat is smarter to eat a dead mouse
Wait a second.....
snakes in Guam
All snakes will but you usually have to warm it up and make it twitch. These snakes will eat them without the song and dance act.
It’s rainin’ mice... hallelujah, it’s rainin’ mice...
Or, for the metalheads in the audience:
From a lacerated sky...
What about all the other critters who will eat carrion whenever they find it?
They do have a bad problem but this sounds like a worse idea.
Any cat or dog finding these mice will die, too.
Sounds like they’re dying from being eaten by the snakes right now.
I seriously doubt that.
They’re long, skinny colubrids, much like a black rat snake.
They don’t have the physical wherewithal to take on cats or dogs.
Yes, Thor was really cool, but Loki, not so much in those movies.
Using dead animals as a means of covert warfare has been around since at least about 300 BCE.
You are correct to a point. Heat signature is prime but most also hunt by scent trail also. But since the rats are dead there is no scent trail to follow. Drop enough and some will be consumed.
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