A farmer's video has revealed the disturbing reality of the mice plague gripping parts of regional NSW.
Jack Cresswell, the host of the Farms Advice podcast, posted a video on TikTok of him undoing a secondary pool filter in Dubbo, in the NSW Orana region.
As he removes the lid of the filter, he reveals dozens of mice dead underneath.
"The filter is found like that five times a week," he told Yahoo News Australia.
People online were disturbed by the video, with one saying, "That's so gross".
"I don't feel safe in this world," one commented on TikTok.
"Hate this mouse plague," another said before Mr Cresswell commented, "the smell".
The plague has been escalating for months with a farmer last month claiming he has seen two million mice on his Dubbo property.
Scott Mudford told A Current Affair he caught 150 mice in his house alone in March and 300 outside.
He resorted to gluing lino to his fro
nt door to stop the rodents getting into his house as they were chewing through the door.
In most of the afflicted towns, the mice – which are able to breed from six weeks old and churn out a litter every 21 days – continue to wreak havoc unabated.
Farmers can't afford to end plague
The end to a horror mouse plague that has tormented communities in western NSW is finally in sight thanks to doubly toxic bait, but farmers say they now can't afford to finish the rodents off.
Mice have been running rampant through large tracts of inland NSW and parts of southern Queensland, destroying crops and causing significant damage to tonnes of stored hay and grain.
Torrential rain and cooler temperatures were hoped to put a significant dampener on their numbers ahead of the sowing of the winter crop, however both have had little impact in only a few areas.
But thanks to research by Australia's national science agency, an emergency permit allowing bait producers to double the toxicity of their product has been granted.
The wheat bait will still be applied at the same rate but will have twice as much of the deadly zinc phosphide on each grain.
The higher dosed bait should be on the market soon and will only cost farmers about one dollar more per kilogram.
But NSW Farmers says bait is already in short supply, with demand causing prices to skyrocket, and farmers' coffers nearing empty.
A survey of 1100 farmers across NSW found 94 per cent have had to bait for mice already, and that the costs of baiting had exceeded $150,000 for some.
'Doing everything we can'
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said this week the government was doing all it could.
"It's likely to get worse before it gets better and we're doing everything we can, but there's only so much we can do," she told 2GB radio.
"We can't pretend to be able to fix what is a natural disaster – there's no other word for it."
Ms Berejiklian defended her government's failure to meet with the a delegation of farmers and Country Women's Association members, saying the meetings were scheduled at a time the coalition party room was required to gather to discuss legislation.
On Thursday, NSW Agriculture Minister Adam Marshall announced affected rural households would be eligible for rebates of up to $500, and small businesses will be able to claim up to $1000.