More on cats and wildlife depredation

The rhetoric on cats seems to be heating up.  The sciencemediacentre in New Zealand today reported on the response to comments from economist Greth Morgan on ways to curb cat predation on native wildlife.  Morgan calls for the following:

1) bells or other noise makers on cat collars  (I had read previously that these were ineffective but recent work suggests they might reduce mortality by 50%.)

2) mandatory registration and microchipping of cats (Sounds expensive, and I don’t really see how this would work to reduce predation.)

3) keep cats indoors (That’s what I do. We’ve kept different combinations of two cats indoors for 20 years – that’s 40 “cat-years” of healthy, happy cats – and have had exactly zero wildlife kills attributed to our cats.  I don’t see why this is so difficult for pet owners to do.)

4) neuter cats (This is a no-brainer.)

5) don’t replace your cats when they die (Okay this one is pretty weird.  Why not?  Isn’t part of the problem that we’ve got huge numbers of unclaimed and feral cats around?  I’d work to find homes for as many as we can, and just train people to neuter their cats and keep them indoors.)

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