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« Puppies can even solve the feral cat problem (sort of) | Main | What did liberals do? »

20 January 2010


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Liz Palika

Woo hoo! You go, girl!


One indication of of the intractability of this issue is that advocates on BOTH sides post completely onesided rants at the same time contending that only their side is rational and addressing the "real" issues. Neither side is willing to address what are the "real" issues for the other side. Neither side actually hears what the "real" issues are for the other side.

But you're not really expecting a discussion are you?


Myself, I think these folks know TNR works, they just don't care. I've become convinced none of this has squat to do with control of roaming cats, owned or not, but is rather referred aggression.

And retrieverman? There are plenty of urban coyotes throughout the West. So far as I've read and observed, they've not made an appreciable dent on either feral cats or dogs, or on invasive non-natives.

mary frances

Thank you for your writing as always - I wasn't aware of this particular feral plight - in my area if someone is "caught" by the local animal control feeding ferals within city limits - they can be ticketed for exceeding the pet limit allowance - unjust, crazy and cruel..and no help at all in addressing the feral issue...LA situation is not helpful as well...just more quagmires.


When it comes to feral cats in rural areas, I say thank goodness for coyotes!

mary frances

One more thing....if we actually become a No Kill Nation - this discussion will become unnecessary eventually - we'd have the safety net for animals - and we're already paying for it - but for most, No Kill is always come back to having No Kill. I think No Kill is the answer for so many of our woes.


Habitat destruction in the tropics is a huge part of the problem with declines in migratory bird populations. If birds spend all their energy flying to places that don't have food, shelter, water in sufficient amounts for the year-rounders and migrants to share, the number of migrant birds coming back to the US in the spring will be smaller.

Yes, when they get here and can't find food, shelter, water sufficient to raise another generation, then it obviously must be because those damn feral cats wrecked the place.

Many (most) of the more (most) endangered bird species need habitat that isn't conducive for colonies of feral cats to survive, like old-growth timber and dense woodlands of at least 100 acres or more. While a certain number of birds are killed by feral (and owned) cats, let's also remember wind turbines and tall buildings, and even lighting on those buildings, cause a huge number of bird fatalities. If only we can stop cats from putting such obstacles in the bird's ways!!!

mary frances

I remember a past post from Christie at a Las Vegas gathering (No-Kill?) - the term for feral cat was suggested to be replaced by the term community cat - sorry don't remember who came up with the new name but it is more descriptive - many so-called ferals have been easily tamed in my experience and have been adopted with great success - the name itself feral scares people off from these terribly victimized animals.


I'm tempted to quip a Rodney King at this well thought out post on an important topic. *Restraint*


As i always say ,look at the bigger picture and why we are all there ..To help make the cats ,humans and wildlife live together in a way thats safe for everyone. Some people are so small minded and lack the common sense it takes just to live,that they forget what there fighting for and it becomes blurry and pointless...and no ones getting yes when things get like this its time to step back and look at the MUCHO BIGGER PICTURE..:) puts things back in perspective for EVERYONE involved.Sometimes i think if we all used our Common Sense that there would be world peace.Sounds simple minded...i know but think about it..;)

Peter J. Wolf

While there are legitimate issues to be debated regarding the efficacy, environmental impact, and morality of Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR), such debate continues to be hindered (if not derailed entirely) by the National Audubon Society, American Bird Conservancy, Urban Wildlands Group, and others, who overlook, ignore, and misrepresent the scientific research about cat predation and its impact on bird populations.

These groups are vehemently opposed to TNR, and will present their case any way possible to put an end to it—science be damned. Careful scrutiny of their claims (Travis Longcore’s recent essay in Conservation Biology is a case in point) often exposes glaring omissions, contradictions, and bias. One can’t help but wonder if the individuals and organizations that fund such work know what they’re paying for.

Let’s hope any forthcoming environmental impact studies demand a more rigorous process for vetting the “experts” involved than did the court case.

Peter J. Wolf

For those who may be skeptical of assertions made cat advocates, check out this 2009 article from Los Angeles Magazine’s online version:

In it, Garry George, “chapter network director for Audubon California,” suggests to readers:

“If feral cats are destroying your property, including your birds, you can use a Hav-a-Heart trap with a permit from Animal Services. They will spay or neuter the cats you trap and offer to find them a home.”

What’s disturbing here is not the part about spay/neuter—though it seems likely that, at the time he was writing this, George knew full well that his organization was trying to put a stop to it. No, the problem here is his suggestion—published without any questions asked, apparently—that Animal Services would try to find homes for the feral cats you brought them. Either George is woefully ignorant about such matters, or is simply lying.

It’s not clear how such statements get us any closer to solving the kinds of complex problems we face. At some point, one is left to wonder whether George and so many of his wildlife conservationist colleagues have lost sight entirely of their mission.


Well said Christie!!!

Nancy Peterson

Read more about the cats versus birds debate from The Humane Society of the United States at:

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