Posted: Wednesday, 04 December 2013 5:03AM

Mouse Paratroopers Battling Snakes in Guam



Image Source White/Thinkstock(HAGATNA, Guam) -- Two thousand mice have been parachuted onto Guam, in an effort to try to rid the island of a determined and numerous enemy: brown tree snakes.

The reptiles are an invasive species that are multiplying as they decimate the island nation's native birds and other animals -- and cause millions in damage to electrical and other systems into which they slither.

KUAM-TV reports the U.S. Agriculture Department is now relying on the mice to fight them, and it's a suicide mission.  The rodents were already dead when they were packed onto tiny parachutes and dropped via helicopter into the trees in which the snakes hunt -- but the dead mice pack a secret weapon: they were loaded with a little Tylenol.

The over-the-counter pain reliever isn't toxic to most animals in small amounts, but it's poisonous to the snakes.  When the snakes eat the baited mice, U.S. Agriculture Department officials hope, Guam's snake problem will be over.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


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