Here’s why it’s important to keep cats inside
Terrestrial ecologist at Sydney University, Professor Chris Dickman says 95 to 99 per cent of pet cats will kill native animals if they get the opportunity. ABC Drive program with Paul Turton, 14 May 2020. Listen here: Why keep your cat inside – 4min 32sec
Feral cats are outnumbered in Australia by domestic cats, many of which are allowed to roam free and kill significant numbers of native animals.
Destruction at the jaws of introduced species
These are staggering numbers almost impossible to comprehend.
A national study led by researchers at Charles Darwin University has revealed the full and devastating death toll cats and foxes are wreaking on our native wildlife.
The research coordinated by the Threatened Species Recovery Hub of the National Environmental Science Program has calculated for the first time the total number of mammals, birds and reptiles killed by foxes and cats in Australian each year – 697 million reptiles, 510 million birds and 1.4 billion mammals. These are staggering numbers, almost impossible to comprehend.
It was undertaken by a team of 23 scientists from 16 universities and conservation agencies and is backed by over 50,000 poo and stomach samples and hundreds of density counts for cats and foxes across the country. The project’s senior scientist Professor John Woinarski said that the findings highlight that targeted and integrated management of both foxes and cats is essential to conserving Australian wildlife.
“To be effective, management programs need to be highly strategic as numbers of both of these predators can rebound quickly when management is not on-going or is piecemeal across a landscape,” Woinarksi said.
The study also found the highest toll by cats is around urban areas, where the number of animals killed per spare kilometre is 5,670 by feral cats and 13,100 by pet cats. (Source: Organic Gardener, ABC Issue 133, 2022)
MMM … Issue 32, August 2022