Saturday, December 4, 2010

Killing and shooting feral cats??

LINCOLN, Neb. -- A report that recommends killing feral cats as a way to control the animals, including a primer on how to shoot a cat, is stirring emotions among bird and cat lovers.
The University of Nebraska at Lincoln's study found that neutering or spaying is ineffective at eliminating feral cat colonies, though useful in reducing colonies' expansion.
One official from the American Bird Conservancy calls the report "a must read" for communities with a feral cat problem.
But critics note the wild cats help control rodent populations, and say habitat destruction, herbicides and other issues are a bigger threat to birds.
They also question the report's finding that feral cats' killing of birds costs the U.S. $17 billion, when accounting for how much bird watchers, hunters and others spend on the hobbies.

From Louise Holton, Alley Cat Rescue : Feral cat TNR DOES work
First go to Vox Felina's webpages and read about how these so-called "studies" on cat predation are all flawed and exaggerated. Secondly, TNR DOES work. I have TNR'd many colonies during the last 20 years that no longer exist today. The cats all died eventually---some at 12 to 15 years old. (so much for "feral cats live short, miserable lives".)
The thing is they (the anti-cat folks) look at a couple of colonies who still have cats in them 15 or so years later, and say TNR does not work. The truth of this is the U S is a CONTINENT and we have no laws or even ways of implementing any laws to force people to sterilize their housecats. Nor can our animal control agencies keep up with people abandoning cats, so colonies will have a constant influx of new animals. But in every colony on a college campus, or any of the colonies the anti-cat people cite, the numbers are down from around 1,000 to even 2,000 cats to 500 or less.
Thing is: THEY will not listen. THEY have made up their minds that feral cats are Invasive, alien, exotic pests (even though cats have been living in the U.S. for over 500 years in a feral state) and have taken over as Mesopredators as we killed all the larger predators such as wolves and cougars.
Every study shows that even if cats rely solely on hunting, rodents are their main prey. A small number of cats become "bird specialists" but for the main part, actually feral cats live in cities and urban areas, and their main source of food is HUMAN GARBAGE.
ALSO....Only on small islands have they been able to eliminate feral cats, and some islands took 16 years (Marion Island) to do this, and other islands (Macquarie) became a disaster zone after they eliminated feral cats. So how in the heck do they plan to wipe out millions of cats on a Continent? And what will happen to our cruelty laws? So you are then allowed to go out and shoot any cat at will? What about pet cats??
I could write a book on this topic, but don't want to go on too much. Let's finish with a warning from Dr. John Terborgh in his book "Tropic Cascades": Dr Terborgh warned that eradication of cats alone on islands could result in a release in the rat populations and intensify bird declines. Now imagine the rat populations exploding on continental USA?
Dr Lilith in Australia found that protecting and restoring the habitats of declining native wildlife may be MORE IMPORTANT than simply controlling where pets can go. She said there was a popular perception that cats were the main problem in conserving small mammals, but vegetation and ground cover density appear to be a more important issue.

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