Monday, 15 June 2015

What is the best way to control feral cat populations?

Yes, some people hate living in proximity to feral cats. But, as a recent local protest highlights, there are right and wrong ways to deal with them

2:40PM BST 08 Jun 2015

I'm not a regular attendee of anti-authority demonstrations, but this morning was an exception: I've just come back from a street protest. What was the theme: austerity cuts? Human rights? Gay pride? In fact it was something much tamer, although tame is an inappropriate word in the circumstances: it was about feral cats.

The protest was at a local apartment complex in Bray, County Wicklow in Ireland, home to around 100 human families. There's a strict "no pet" rule for residents, but around a dozen cats lurk around the place. They are mostly feral, and they have upset a small number of residents: some people cannot abide the sight or proximity of cats.

Last week, the apartment management company circulated a letter stating that there was a plan to "engage with a pest control company and remove the feral cats", commencing on June 8. Although it was not explicitly stated, many people suspected that this meant a "cat death squad" was being summoned, to remove the cats, and then to euthanase them.

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