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Sat Mar 14, 2020, 09:48 PM

Cats kill up to 10 times more wildlife than natural predators -- so keep them indoors

Domestic cats kill millions of birds and other mammals every year.
Tibi Puiu by Tibi Puiu March 13, 2020

The vast majority of U.S. households own at least one pet and according to a national pet owners survey, there were approximately 95.6 million cats living in households in the United States in 2017. Along with dogs, cats are the most popular pets — but while many of us truly adore these sweet fur balls, pet felines are natural-born killers that can wreak havoc on ecosystems.

Researchers at North Carolina State University and the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences distributed GPS trackers to pet owners in six countries, most of which were used in the U.S., U.K, Australia and New Zealand.

By the end of the study, the researchers had collected data on the movements and prey-catching of 925 house cats — and the results were gruesome.

The cats killed up to 10 times more wildlife than a comparable predator in the wild. Most of the carnage took place close to home, around a 100-meter radius of the household where cats spend most of their time outside.

More:
https://www.zmescience.com/ecology/animals-ecology/cats-kill-up-10-times-more-wildlife-than-natural-predators-so-keep-them-indoors/

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Reply Cats kill up to 10 times more wildlife than natural predators -- so keep them indoors (Original post)
Judi Lynn Mar 14 OP
sunflowerseed Mar 14 #1
Duppers Mar 14 #4
Vogon_Glory Mar 14 #2
Jamastiene Mar 14 #3
TDale313 Mar 14 #5
Cozmo Mar 14 #6
littlemissmartypants Mar 15 #7
PoindexterOglethorpe Mar 15 #8
Judi Lynn Mar 15 #9
sue4e3 Mar 15 #10
NickB79 Mar 16 #12
hunter Mar 16 #11
The_jackalope Mar 17 #13

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 09:56 PM

1. They kill home destroying mice and rats? Thought that was a bonus!

🤗

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Response to sunflowerseed (Reply #1)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 10:10 PM

4. Yep *inside* the house is a bonus.

But killing songbirds is a hell-no in my book & I LOVE CATS but always kept ours inside.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 10:01 PM

2. Having seen house cats attempt to assault mockingbird

And blue jay nests and the birds’ successful counterattacks, I confess that I’m not ready to accept the report’s conclusions.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 10:09 PM

3. In my hometown, it is packs of neglected "pet" dogs that do it.

I keep my cat indoors 100% of the time. Well, 99%, because of vet appointments. They are in their pet carriers when I take them to the vet. I love watching the birds and other wildlife outside. So, that works all the way around.

I agree on keeping cats indoors, but my original reason was to protect the cats from being ripped up by dogs. Back when I was a kid, I had two cats killed that way. I could not keep them indoors back then. I didn't have a say on how they were kept. I vowed to keep my cats inside with me when I got old enough to get my own place. Now, I can.

It is good to see that keeping them inside to protect them also protects the wildlife too. I love watching the birds and squirrels and other critters that make it through and get on my trail cameras, despite all of these abused, neglected dog packs that are the real threat in my hometown.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 10:13 PM

5. It's much safer for the cats, too.

Indoor kitties live far longer than outdoor or indoor/outdoor cats.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 10:51 PM

6. Cats are predators

Owners need to keep their cats inside.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2020, 12:05 AM

7. I love birds too.

Here's something that I read about a while back...

Birds be safe: Can a novel cat collar reduce avian mortality by domestic cats (Felis catus)?
Author links open overlay panelS.K.WillsonJ.A.Novak
Show more
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gecco.2015.01.004

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2351989415000050

Highlights

We tested the use of a novel cat collar in reducing bird and mammal mortality.


Cats wearing collars killed 19 times fewer birds than uncollared cats.


The Birdsbesafe® collar is highly effective at reducing bird deaths.


We strongly suggest its use for owned and feral cats, primarily in the spring.


The Birdsbesafe® collar is an effective conservation tool for use on domestic cats.

Abstract at the link first link.

Picture of collar:
?v=1548788184

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2020, 12:35 AM

8. I often wonder about these numbers.

How exactly are they established?

I don't currently have any cats, but when I do I keep them indoors.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2020, 08:22 AM

9. We had a bird feeder in our yard, a roaming cat next door which tore up birds in our back yard,

and a yard across the street which was left outside during the day, got bored, and visited our back yard to hunt, too.

I and my husband chased one cat up a tree and called the owner to come and get it. He climbed our tree, the cat wouldn't budge, we got a blanket from inside and stood under the tree while the owner pursued the cat which leaped from the tree into the blanket which we slammed shut until he could climb down and get it.

Our next door neighbor had been in the aforementioned cat owners' house once, and their cat brought a live bird from our yard into their house, and they all ran around trying to catch the bird until they opened the door and the bird was able to fly away and save itself.

I was absolutely furious at the owners, but too timid to really yell at them about letting their cats destroy birds. I believe it's so obvious people should grasp how to do the right thing instinctively. It seems clear to me they just don't give a #### about inflicting pain and suffering through their cats.

Also, when I was a child, my parents kept a cat outdoors in California, and they had been raised around people who didn't seem to understand much, either. They didn't get a cat again until much later, by which time they finally had figured it out.

I personally saw a group of neighborhood dogs tearing a cat at our house and became hysterical, of course, and could never, never forget it. I am horrified that people will expose their pets to predators which will clearly go after them, as well.

It's all so damned unbearably sad, and it all could be avoided if people took the time to be responsible for the little creatures they take. Why wouldn't they protect them when they bring them into their lives, and respect the other creatures, also? God knows the bird population, along with all others, except for humans, of course, is rapidly disappearing.

Monstrous.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2020, 10:30 AM

10. This study will get cats killed

It's complete bullshit that they put this study out because it doesn't take into account the struggle of feral cat colonies(which they are for no fault of their own), The people who help them and the death this study will cause to them . Sure it uses house cat but ferals are hated in their communities . The cruelty knows no limits and the people who feed , spay and care for them with TNVR ( which is still the best method to contain and control them are vehemently hated. Because humans need someone to hate if they don't like something. This study will justify millions of deaths and acts of cruelty in the minds of those who commit them and in the minds of those making the laws to protect ferals

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Response to sue4e3 (Reply #10)

Mon Mar 16, 2020, 10:01 PM

12. They're a non-native, invasive species

Why shouldn't they be killed? They're no different than boa constrictors, wild boars, emerald ash borders or starlings in that respect. They hammer native ecosystems. Cuteness doesn't offset their environmental impact.

Thank God the wildlife here in North America aren't as susceptible to invasive predators as on islands or in Australia. Australia's plan is complete extermination.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/australia-is-trying-to-kill-millions-of-stray-cats-by-airdropping-poisoned-sausages-2019-04-26/

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Mon Mar 16, 2020, 01:00 PM

11. We have coyotes in our neighborhood that are damned near invisible.

I tell this to neighbors who let their cats roam free but some don't believe me.

Automobiles are another danger. Worse, it seems to me that some drivers are sociopaths who run over animals on purpose.

When I was a kid my parents owned a small orchard with outdoor cats who roamed free. The coyotes took a quite a few of them and this was considered normal. You didn't want to get too attached to the outdoor cats, not any more than you'd get attached to the pigs.

Our indoor cats were wary of the outdoors. My grandma took her cat out on a leash.

We have a bird feeder, but sometimes I think it's really a feeder for the hawks and falcons. We attract a lot of collared doves (which are not a native species) that the hawks and falcons find quite tasty.

Keeping our garden friendly to birds seems to reduce insect pests considerably. We don't use insecticides.

Our dogs chase away any cats that might venture into our yard but they are indifferent to birds.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Tue Mar 17, 2020, 12:38 PM

13. Domestic humans kill a million times more wildlife than natural predators.

Luckily we"re keeping them all indoors now too.

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