Cat colonies are groups of cats that have either been abandoned or born in the wild. Colony cats are generally labelled by residents and councils as ‘feral’, and are commonly blamed for killing native species and transmitting disease to humans.
Many councils around Australia practise ‘trap and kill’ programs to reduce colony cat numbers. However, studies have shown that the “trap and kill” method is ineffective in controlling cat colonies. Killing colony cats only creates a vacancy in the area that is desirable to new, un-de-sexed cats. This is due to the availability of food and shelter that supported the original colony, entices the new cats into the area, creating a never-ending problem cycle.
The only effective and humane solution to managing cat colonies is a trap, de-sex and release program.
Myth #1: Cat Colonies Decimate Native SpeciesCats are widely blamed for the loss of native species, particularly in Australia. In reality, colony cats generally eat mice, rats, rabbits and garbage, and are commonly being fed by humans. The majority of native species loss can be attributed to:
- urban and pastoral sprawl that destroys natural habitat
- drought, fire and other acts of nature
- soil erosion
- chemical (pesticide) pollution of animals’ natural habitat