The Mouse-Free Marion project aims to restore the critical breeding habitat of over two million seabirds on Marion Island in the sub-Antarctic by completely eradicating mice from the island.
Non-native, albatross-killing mice were accidently introduced to Marion Island in the sub-Antarctic by ships in the 1800s. With no natural predators, the mice prey on native invertebrates and plants, as well as on sea bird eggs, chicks and even adult birds as they sit on their nests. The tunneling activities of the mice is also drying out peat bogs, which cover half of the island and are important for carbon storage. The Mouse-Free Marion project aims to restore the critical breeding habitat of over two million seabirds on Marion Island, by removing mice from the 30,000ha island. Additionally, the project will improve the island’s ecosystems resilience to climate change by removing the impact the mice have on other native fauna and flora, and benefit birdwatchers throughout the Southern Hemisphere. The project will benefit 28 seabird species including Grey-headed, Sooty and Wandering Albatross. Twelve educational events about the project will be delivered in South Africa.