A dark-eyed junko is currently nesting within a metre of my home and has done so for many years. This ground bird, among many others here, consumes insects and grubs and is good for the environment. Doesn’t cost me a penny, they look after themselves.
If I had an outdoor cat, these birds would not be here. Domestic cats kill for sport even though they have a full stomach. I would also have to pay to feed and maintain the cat. I prefer the birds.
I understand there is a high incidence of feline leukemia amongst Vancouver Island cougar as a result of consuming diseased domestic cats. Makes sense that the cougar would take advantage of a readily available source of food (both cats and dogs) that we allow to wander about.
A cat by-law that addresses the source of the problem, although well intended and necessary, will not be anywhere near 100 per cent effective due to either an individual’s ignorance of the situation and/or their disregard for the by-law.
My suggestion is to use a live animal trap and turn the interloper over to animal control. When cherished pets fail to return home for feeding, their owners may consider tagging and control of the animal a better choice. If an animal has no owner you will be doing a service to the animal and community by taking it off the street. A suitable trap found on-line ($65) is likely cheaper than a fence around your garden.
When the service costs to the community increase, council may then have some input.
Estimates of 1.3 to 4 billion birds killed each year by cats in the U.S.A .www.sciencenews.org/article/cats-kill-more-one-billion-birds-each-year.