Two thousand mice dropped on Guam by parachute — to kill snakes
They floated down from the sky Sunday — 2,000 mice, wafting on tiny cardboard parachutes over Andersen Air Force Base in the U.S. territory of Guam.
But the rodent commandos didn't know they were on a mission: to help eradicate the brown tree snake, an invasive species that has caused millions of dollars in wildlife and commercial losses since it arrived a few decades ago.
That's because they were dead. And pumped full of painkillers.
This apparently is what constitutes a useful expenditure of preciously short federal dollars.
Look I get it - introducing snakes into an ecosystem screws things up. They mate and multiply and all sorts of mayhem ensues. This is actually a serious problem and given what's at stake, difficult problems require creative solutions.
The solution is apparently Tylenol.
For some reason, the snakes are almost uniquely sensitive to acetaminophen, the active ingredient in the ubiquitous over-the-counter painkiller. If you can get a tree snake to eat just 80 milligrams, you can kill it. That's only about one-sixth of a standard pill — pigs, dogs and other similarly sized animals would have to eat about 500 of them to get into any trouble.
Brown tree snakes also love mice. It's easy to bait mice with acetaminophen, but how do you then deliver the mice to the snakes?
Operation Jerry Drop!
Of course, this comes on the heels of the "need" to cut paratrooper units. So, it does seem pretty funny that this solution hits the wires so soon after the airborne unit cuts are announced.
And, it is also appropriate that such a topic requires a relink to Blackfive's ubiquitous "ULTIMATE" Differential Theory of the U.S. Armed Forces (Snake Model)