Sunday, November 27, 2005

Why Supporting Feral Cat Colonies is Wrong

On the front page of its latest newsletter, Another Chance Animal Rescue proudly described its activities supporting a feral cat colony in southern Maine. While those involved must be good-hearted people, their actions can have severe negative consequences for wild birds and other animals.

Cats hunt small mammals like mice, voles, shrews, moles, and chipmunks. Cats hunt birds like warblers, wrens, chickadees, sparrows, and cardinals. By killing small animals, cats are reducing biodiversity, sometimes virtually eliminating native species. By removing small animals from natural environments, they are also removing a prey base for naturally occurring predators like hawks, owls, and foxes.

Domestic felines should be just that: house cats.

Incidentally, the Another Chance Animal Rescue Mission Statement suggests that supporting feral cat colonies is outside their intended purpose. The organization's board ought to examine this activity and withdraw its support.

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