In life, there are cat people. And there are dog people. Unlike liberals and conservatives, however, they often co-exist peacefully together.
But for all their value as household pets, cats in particular can wreak real havoc on wildlife—especially feral cats born outdoors and untamed by the loving human “companions,” as PETA people always try to depict themselves.
In fact, if there’s one issue where the haters at PETA twist themselves into knots trying to cope with a real-world problem while maintaining their “just leave the animals alone” BS, it’s the issue of feral cats, those often ferocious felines who are abandoned or born outdoors and who revert back to their “wild” ancestry as hunters and killers.
Their prey, unsurprisingly, are millions of songbirds, small mammals (mostly rodents) and even lizards or reptiles where available.
Anyone who’s ever watched even a pampered housecat come to life when a mouse manages to sneak indoors knows that Fluffy can instantly transform from couch creature to clawed killer in seconds.
Feral cats are like those domesticated mouse hunters, only bitten by radioactive spiders. As a result, according to research done by the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, feral cats—of which there are millions in the United States—have become a serious and growing threat to the populations of numerous native birds, mammals and other wildlife.
Those numbers are much higher than previous studies suggested, according to Smithsonian scientists. Their on-the-ground research found that cats kill more than four times the amount of birds as had been previously estimated.
Here are a few data that support their concern:
- In New Zealand, it is estimated that feral cats have been responsible for the extinction of six native bird species and more than 70 other species, as well as depleting bird and lizard species
- In Australia, feral cats have devastated native populations of ground nesting birds, and smaller mammals and caused the extinction of several marsupials and mammals
- On dozens of islands around the world, feral cats have been implicated in the extinction of hundreds of native species of birds, mammals and rodents; the only solution conservation biologists have pursued is ridding entire islands of all cats
- In the United States, cats—especially feral cats—are the leading threat to native wildlife, responsible for the deaths of more than 3.7 billion birds and 21 billion mammals every year, including songbirds, mice, squirrels and rabbits