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Support for customers affected by the NSW mouse plague.

2 June 2021 |Media release

The past six months have seen eastern states dealing with one of the worst mice plagues in recent history. After record breaking crops throughout NSW in 2020, the abundance of crop residue and stored grain combined with relatively mild weather over summer and into autumn have resulted in rapid growth in mice populations to plague proportions.

Farm businesses and other agribusinesses are affected in a variety of ways – with the highest impacts being felt in Central and Western NSW.

In response, Rural Bank, is working closely with impacted customers and is providing assistance should it be required, on a case by case basis. Affected Rural Bank customers are encouraged to contact their relationship manager to work with them to develop an assistance plan to ease any financial burden.

Customers with insurance claims should contact their insurers as soon as possible.

Help for Rural Bank customers

Rural Bank customers requiring assistance can contact their relevant Agribusiness Relationship Manager, their local Elders or Community Bank branch or Rural Bank Customer Service Team on 1300 660 155.

Other available assistance

In addition, the NSW government has announced a $50 million assistance package which includes:

  • Free treatment of grain for use as mouse bait on the perimeter paddocks
  • Rebates to assist in the costs of baiting. ($1,000 for small businesses and $500 for households)

The NSW Department of Primary Industries is undertaking additional research in an effort to identify and develop future tools to combat mice plagues, whilst the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority have also issued a permit allowing the concentration of zinc phosphide in bait to be doubled.

Research by the CSIRO shows current concentration levels only kill 50 per cent of mice. When the concentration is doubled it is lethal almost 100 per cent of the time. 

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