There has to be SOME way of stopping a family member's pet cat from killing all the local wildlife.
Said family member lives in an absolute wildlife haven on a river bank surrounded by wonderful countryside. Some of you might remember the Nightjar that turned up in the garden which I posted a photograph of. Well there are also Redwings, Otters, Kingfishers and tonnes of other interesting creatures (some obviously in trouble).
Unfortunately a wild Tom kitten was brought into the household at the start of the year and since then I've seen a dramatic drop in wildlife around the garden. Lots of things are being caught, a Water Vole and Tree Sparrow being the most recent (both survived due to swift action).
I can't bear to watch this happen any longer, but the family member absolutely refuses to place a collar on the cat, not even one that breaks off if the cat gets caught. Infact she barely responds when I mention it to her.. I just don't get it.
Surely there's some other way of helping this problem? Please help, I desperately need it.
I love Columbidae.
As the said "family member"will not consider a collar on the cat there would seem no chance of a curfew as had been suggested by Chris Packham a little while back.I cannot think of a sensible suggestion so maybe you will have to get rid of family member,there may be time off for good behaviour !!!
Birding is for everyone no matter how good or bad we are at it,enjoy it while you can
If this is a wild tom kitten it will always wander off, so a collar will denote ownership to other cat lovers who will see it and take it in. get it neutred and collared with a good bell. We have had cats for years with two new kittens this year, the birds soon learn the bell and avoid the kittens when out. Put your feeders about 6ft up in height on metal poles that cats can't climb.
In reply to andypandy:
The collar is completely out of the question, brought up the subject tonight and was told "I want my cat to live a completely natural life!"
To which I responded with "Well is it ok for me to bring out a pack of hunting type dogs and let them kill everything in the area just because I want them to live a natural life now?" and compared it to Fox hunting, which apparently "isn't the same" lol....
I just can't believe that the family member isn't bothered by the fact that endangered wildlife is being killed here! Why is one single domestic animal more important than 100's of wild ones?? That makes no sense!
Anyway I give up really, unless there is some sort of device that can be attached to the house which sets off when a cat is in range... does anyone know?
In reply to Fieldfare:
I think you might start something off with this one...
Cats are natural predators to small birds and mammals just the same as larger wild mammals and birds of prey are.
I dont really know if there is an all out solution to this problem, just many differences of opinion :)
"dawn is mine, but I will share it, with whatever bird will wear it"
In reply to deadpolecat:
Is the tom entire? If he is try suggesting to her that she should get him neutered as he will start to wander in search of females and this can and does lead to a lot of toms dead on the roads, ending up seriously injured from fighting against other toms, not to mention creating more unwanted kittens, and cats are also vulnerable to a range of STD's and other diseases including a feline form of HIV for which there is no cure and cat flu which can also be fatal. The risk of a cat catching these is increased if the cat is allowed to wander and left entire because the more cats the cat comes into contact with the higher the chances of them coming home with something nasty (and potentially costly in vets bills). At the very least, you might be able to prevent him creating more unwanted kittens to flood rescue centres or ending up dead and unwanted. There is nothing natural about a domestic cats life - if they were leading natural lives they wouldn't be vaccinated and if they caught something nasty they wouldn't get treatment for it they would be left to die like any other "natural" creature. I'm sure (I hope) that she would have him straight to the vet if there was something wrong with him, or will she just sit back and let nature take it's course (though that would be illegal)?
For the wildlife, if the person doesn't want to take responsibliity for their pet to limit their impact on the wildlife there isn't a lot you can do I'm afraid :-(
Millie & Fly the Border Collies
In reply to KatTai:
It probably depends on how old the household member is. I think people are assuming she's a similar generation to you. More easily tackled if not. Assuming she is, it seems she's crossed the line of 'reasonable behaviour'?
In reply to Robbo:
Collars (with a bell) don't actually work. Prey animals and birds don't associate a little tinkle of a bell with danger.
Keeping a cat in at night will restrict it's hunting to daylight where less for it to catch will be about but apart from that there is very little you can do.
In reply to Lolly_24:
Right lets try and answer all your questions.
Yes the cat has been fixed.. so much for wanting him to live a natural life.. that rule only applies to collars I'm afraid!
This family member is actually rather old and won't even bother looking at safety collars, some brands are approved by the cats protection league as well so I see no reason why not to!!
The bell isn't supposed to be an association, it's meant to alert animals that something is around, because cats hunt silently and hide very well. It isn't 100% perfect but has been proven to scare things away about 50% of the time. The warning devices are apparently better than the bells.
Curfew is also out of the question here, they previously had a tom cat who was only kept in at night because he got run over twice, and he still slaughtered everything in their old garden including a moorhen chick and mistle thrush!
They won't lock this cat in at night because there is no traffic for a mile or so where they live now, and forgot to say but both tree sparrow and watervole were caught during the day :/
I'm not sure I can provide any advice pages because I've said everything already and the answer is still "No I'll never put a collar on my cat thankyou!"
I was seriously pinning my hopes on some device attached to the house that would go off when a cat was in range, I thought I had heard about something like that but no one seems to know.
I guess all the animals are dead then......
This is a really distressing problem, isn't it? I've kept cats all my adult life so I've had to face the killer instinct myself. The cat deterrent might work - is this a secret operation?
I'm lucky with my current cat. I must try to get a photo of him next spring dozing in the sun with birds feeding nearby. But I have to chase other cats out - I usually notice warning calls from the birds, check to see if they are visible in the tree and burst out of the kitchen door. If they're calling but not visible, it's a sparrowhawk.
Your relative is showing no sign of being interested in the wildlife that impressed you. Is there any chance you could awaken an interest - perhaps lending/giving her some binoculars and books?
Sorry Lollly, people should save their money as I have two of these devices in my garden and they just do not do the job. Until there is a new law which makes people accountable and responsable for their cats actions (like there are for dog owners) This will just be an ongoing problem. It breaks my heart when I see one of my neighbours 4 cats kill yet another bird in my garden and then just leave it ripped up and dead on my lawn. I have tried all avenues to educate my neighbours but they just don't care what their cats get up to, "Ahh its just their way" is all I seem to get !!!!
I have tried reason, I have tried all sorts of "so called" prevention all to no avail. The way I feel now regarding cats, I am tempted to take the law into my own hands. I know the risks and the legality of any action I would take but my only concern is for the welfare of all the birds that visit my garden and birds in general. Something need to be done and done ASAP otherwise I may just do something I live to regret.
No doubt a lot on here will shoot me down in flames, but, as a Bird lover first and foremost I am sick of seing them killed by cats, and owners ( granted not all of them) not giving a damn.
Petition : http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/17977
Feed The Birds....not the cats!!!!
I know....my spelling's crap !!
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