LETTER: Keep your cats indoors

Although one grows accustomed to reading utter hooey in letters to the editor, it’s shameful and dangerous for Black Press to print it.

The facts regarding outdoor cats and bird populations:

1. Canada’s wild bird populations are estimated to have declined about 12 per cent in the last 40 years, with some populations decreasing by more than 95 per cent.

2. Cats have contributed directly to the extinction of 34 species of birds. Next to rats and humans, of course, that’s the biggest factor.

3. Globally, the number of at-risk bird species has increased from 47 to 87 between 2001 and 2015. The causes of decline are complex, but cat predation introduces a significant additional pressure to populations that are already facing challenges such as loss of habitat, pesticides and factors associated with global warming.

4. Well-fed, domesticated cats who have ample toys to play with still pose a danger to avian populations. The hunting action is an instinctive action. They may not eat the birds, but they will still hunt. Cats are indiscriminate on who they choose to kill. It can be a common bird, but it can be a bird that’s perilously close to being wiped out as well. It’s a big problem.

Keep your cats indoors.

Allison Barber

Sooke

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