Should domestic cats be eradicated to protect wildlife?

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posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 12:50 AM
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Conservation campaigner Gareth Morgan has claimed that New Zealand's domestic cats are a menace to wildlife, and should be strictly controlled.

He makes the point that many New Zealand species are being driven to extinction by domestic cats. He suggests that in the same was as dogs should be leashed, cats should only be allowed to exist if they are confined.


Last week Gareth Morgan, an economist and conservation campaigner, called for cats to be confined or eradicated from his native New Zealand to protect the wildlife.

Originally there were no predators here, but we now have an enormous number of species that were introduced when the settlers came – weasels, stoats, ferrets, rats, mice and cats and dogs. And increasing numbers of our endemic species are driven to extinction, particularly ground-restricted birds.

For me, it's all cats. I would love New Zealand to have no predators at all. Well, that's a bit extreme – what I mean is no non-confined predators. I'm fine with dogs on leashes. I'm happy with cats as long as they're confined. Our cat population is exploding, and it is ferals and strays who are free to roam.

The Guardian


I don't know. I can see both sides of this issue. Apparently feral cats are killing a large number of native animals. Confining all cats does seem a bit drastic though.

Gareth Morgan continues, arguing that cats that are not chipped should be euthanized, offering to pay a $5 bounty for every cat trapped.


That would be an understatement. I've been on television for the last two nights talking about the SPCA [New Zealand's Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals] – they've been doing trap-neuter-release of stray cats.

They're euthanising fewer and fewer cats, and releasing more into the free-to-range environment, and they're building up the colonies. They say it doesn't matter because the cats are neutered, and my response is that they are not neutering enough to cap the population growth.

I've offered them a $5 bounty per cat if they trap wandering cats and, if it is found to have no owner – if they're not chipped – then I want them to euthanise those cats, not release them into the wild.

The Guardian


Gareth Morgan makes the point: "Do we wait until all our endemic species are extinct and then wonder what we've done?"

New Zealand has the highest rate of cat ownership in the world.


edit on 3-2-2013 by ollncasino because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 12:51 AM
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Yes....for no other reason than that I hate cats...


2nd


+28 more 
posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 12:52 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


The common domesticated house cat kills over 3 BILLION MICE each year in the United States alone.

These numbers are reasons enough to keep Tabby healthy and in large numbers.

Split Infinity



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 12:55 AM
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Cats suck. They step in their litter box then jump on your kitchen table. Filthy feces spreading parasite-having things.


+23 more 
posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 12:56 AM
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No, the same could be said about humans, who are much worse.



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 12:57 AM
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ridiculous
nature changes and adapts all the time
sooner or later a predator would have made its way to new zealand and the animals that couldnt adapt strategies or traits that would allow them to evade said predator would die out
for someone so concerned of nature and the environment he sure doesnt seem to understand it very well

"invasive species" is code for "the new kid on the block"

and we are actively harming the environment by refusing to allow it to adapt to changing circumstance
edit on 3-2-2013 by sirhumperdink because: (no reason given)


+11 more 
posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:02 AM
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Another animal hater with an agenda of his own, wonderful.

Maybe he has a good point, we wouldn't want another uprising of extremists...




posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:03 AM
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Domestic house cats (pets) are not the problem. Colonies of feral cats (not pets) seem to be the problem. Just one little problem with that thought process. If a colony of feral cats become too large for their environment, a blight strikes the cats and wipes out the colony.

Those that have seen it in action can tell you it is a very quick disease and very horrible way for the cats to die.



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:06 AM
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Originally posted by SplitInfinity
reply to post by ollncasino
 


The common domesticated house cat kills over 3 BILLION MICE each year in the United States alone.

These numbers are reasons enough to keep Tabby healthy and in large numbers.

Split Infinity



Yes but they also kill 3.7 billion birds in the US alone. Was discussed recently here

It's gotten so bad they have sent numerous bird species extinct, and most surprisingly cats kill even more birds than other human environmental destructions like habitat clearing, agriculture, pollution etc.


edit on 3/2/13 by polarwarrior because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:06 AM
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reply to post by ollncasino
 


I love cats, they are amazing predators and deserve to be controlled. All pets should have identification being collars or chips. Evolution favors the victor, this is nothing new. Eventually a dominate bird species capable of surviving the predators will emerge and their speciation will give rise to new ecosystems.

99.9999999999999% of species are extinct..... Think about that. What you hope to do protecting a weaker species is going directly against what has been going on since the origin of life.



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:12 AM
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Originally posted by sirhumperdink
ridiculous
nature changes and adapts all the time

sooner or later a predator would have made its way to new zealand and the animals that couldnt adapt strategies or traits that would allow them to evade said predator would die out


Let the cats make all the New Zealand native species go extinct?

That seems a bit drastic.



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:12 AM
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Originally posted by Wertdagf
99.9999999999999% of species are extinct..... Think about that. What you hope to do protecting a weaker species is going directly against what has been going on since the origin of life.


Yes, species do come and go. But the loss of species diversity as a result of human impact is far far greater than it would be naturally. Intervening with nature by increasing cat numbers, and protecting them, giving them shelter, feeding them, giving them medical care means their numbers do not stay in check like they would in the wild. Also introducing cats into countries where they are not native, or introducing different cat varieties means the local wildlife (which has not adapted defenses against these predators) is decimated.

The more we screw with nature the worse it gets, we need to leave things be. Sure let the wild cats exist in peace, but I don't think we should be adopting them and intervening with nature like that - unless they have bells on, caged at night etc.

edit on 3/2/13 by polarwarrior because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:14 AM
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The problem is the apex predators who would lunch on the cats are not present.

How about some venomous snakes? Then, to get rid of the snakes, release wave after wave of snake-eating gorillas, who will just die-off in the winter.

Problem solved.



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:14 AM
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I've killed several cats in my time that I've found wandering around my old neighborhood that may have been someones pets, I didn't care... if it's not on a leash or in a house, I consider it a stray and a threat to local wildlife. Don't get me wrong, I love cats, but they are predators, and need to be controlled. If you are going to let your cat out and wander, please collar it with an attached bell. That simple measure will spook its prey, and I may let it live to return to its semi-responsible owner (semi-responsible because any animals considered pets should NOT be wandering around off of your property).
edit on 3-2-2013 by ForestForager because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:15 AM
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reply to post by polarwarrior
 


Birds are having a come back as far as Bird Populations. I am from Mass. and I see more birds now than I ever have in my life and I hunt so I pay attention.

After we stopped using DDT...many birds...especially Eagles, Falcons, Hawks...are now seen regularily in the skys of Masachusetts. I have an Eagles nest about 2000 feet from my house and if I go to the city you can watch the multitude of Peregrine Falcons swooping off tops of sky scrapers at 200mph to nail a Pidgeon.

As far as small birds...I have a Bird Feeder and the variety of Sparrows, Chickadees, Finches in all colors, Blue Jays, Cardinals, Grackles, Doves, Crows, Pheasent, Turkeys! BIG suckers too!, Orioles, Red Wing Black Birds...well you name it...they are in greater numbers and varieties than I have ever seen...ever!

Split Infinity



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:17 AM
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Don't people put bells on their cats collars? Their prey would hear them coming and take off. My cats have always been indoor cats, safe, content, loved and loveable. They have had very long healthy lives.


+36 more 
posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:20 AM
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Originally posted by ForestForager
reply to post by ollncasino
 

I've killed several cats in my time that I've found wandering around my old neighborhood that may have been someones pets, I didn't care... if it's not on a leash or in a house, I consider it a stray and a threat to local wildlife. Don't get me wrong, I love cats, but they are predators, and need to be controlled. If you are going to let your cat out and wander, please collar it with an attached bell. That simple measure will spook its prey, and I may let it live to return to its semi-responsible owner (semi-responsible because any animals considered pets should NOT be wandering around off of your property).

Where do you live and what are you trying to protect? what is wrong with you?


+24 more 
posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:21 AM
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Originally posted by ForestForager
I've killed several cats in my time that I've found wandering around my old neighborhood that may have been someones pets, I didn't care... if it's not on a leash or in a house, I consider it a stray and a threat to local wildlife. Don't get me wrong, I love cats, but they are predators, and need to be controlled. I


That's a bit off. Killing peoples cats.

Is that not against the law?



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:22 AM
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Originally posted by ollncasino

Originally posted by sirhumperdink
ridiculous
nature changes and adapts all the time

sooner or later a predator would have made its way to new zealand and the animals that couldnt adapt strategies or traits that would allow them to evade said predator would die out


Let the cats make all the New Zealand native species go extinct?

That seems a bit drastic.


that also seems a bit unrealistic no?

explain to me how cats could possibly wipe out all of new zealands native species

also explain to me what youre definition of "native" is
surely you must know that those animals did not originate in new zealand (but migrated one way or another and adapted over a long period of time)

removing the predator from the equation is silly..... thats what they do..... and the prey adapts.... and then the predator adapts.... and then the prey adapts.....

removing the predator would bring it to a slow crawl or a halt
edit on 3-2-2013 by sirhumperdink because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 3 2013 @ 01:22 AM
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Originally posted by SplitInfinity

As far as small birds...I have a Bird Feeder and the variety of Sparrows, Chickadees, Finches in all colors, Blue Jays, Cardinals, Grackles, Doves, Crows, Pheasent, Turkeys! BIG suckers too!, Orioles, Red Wing Black Birds...well you name it...they are in greater numbers and varieties than I have ever seen...ever!


That's wonderful that you have all those birds in your area, but one really needs to look a scientific studies of birds numbers to get an accurate picture of the overall impact - rather than anecdotal accounts from individuals such as yourself. The scientists are saying cats are slaughtering birds on an unprecedented scale, and often sending them extinct, for example..


Domestic cats are, however, known to be a contributing factor to the decline of many species; a factor that has ultimately led, in some cases, to extinction. The South Island Piopio, Chatham Islands Rail,[177] the Auckland Islands Merganser,[182] and the common diving petrel[183] are a few from a long list, with the most extreme case being the flightless Stephens Island Wren, which was driven to extinction only a few years after its discovery.[184][185]




edit on 3/2/13 by polarwarrior because: (no reason given)





 
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