2K Dead Mice Dropped on Guam's Snake War
They're packed with Tylenol to kill invasive creatures
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Dec 3, 2013 11:41 AM CST
In this photo taken Feb. 5, 2013, a US military service member holds a Brown Tree Snake kept in captivity on Andersen Air Force Base on the island of Guam.   (AP Photo/Eric Talmadge)

(Newser) – Guam has a new weapon in its war against brown tree snakes: an army of Tylenol-filled dead mice. The creatures have been dropped onto a US Air Force base using miniature cardboard parachutes, NBC News reports. The snakes, an invasive species, feast on exotic local birds and cause power outages, resulting in millions of dollars of damage every year, according to the Interior Department. Early this year, the US approved an $8 million program to wipe out the snakes; the mice dropped yesterday were the fourth batch—the biggest one yet.

The creatures probably arrived on the island in the 1950s in a cargo shipment that was poorly inspected. So how to get rid of them? Well, they can't handle the acetaminophen that's in Tylenol; a sixth of a pill will knock one dead. Officials are spreading the Tylenol-filled mice, tied to cardboard and tissue paper, across the base via helicopter. "The cardboard is heavier than the tissue paper and opens up in an inverted horseshoe," says an Agriculture official. "It then floats down and ultimately hangs up in the forest canopy." Then "snakes have an opportunity to consume the bait." To keep track of things, some of the mice also have miniscule radios attached.

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Showing 3 of 33 comments
Dec 4, 2013 7:44 PM CST
Acetaminophen relieves SINUS headaches by opening up passageways to relieve crushing atmospheric pressure differential when air trapped w/in a sinus cavity has its O2 molecules absorbed by bloodstream, leaving only 80% of air as N2 molecules so a 14.7psi x 20% = 3psi pressure differential exists across the bony structure of you sinus cavity and outside atm, just enough to cause severe physical headache. What effect it has on snakes, I dunno' but its why you don't let pets eat your med's.
Dec 3, 2013 6:58 PM CST
I dislike the snakes so much that I don't really care. I hope that birds won't get into action on the mouse.
Dec 3, 2013 2:57 PM CST
Tylenol will kill people, too. I hope they are at least using generic acetaminophen