Study: Kitty-Cams Attached to House Cats Show Kill Numbers Higher Than Previously Known
I don’t hate cats. Really, I don’t. My wife has two of them, and I believe the fact that those...
I don’t hate cats. Really, I don’t. My wife has two of them, and I believe the fact that those annoying little bastards are still alive after all these years of warily sharing the same house with me proves that I don’t have an anti-cat bias. I’m not into them, but if you are, then hey, who am I to judge, right? But please, don’t stand there and tell me how your adorable little Boopsy-Woopsy is a gentle soul that wouldn’t harm a fly, because the fact is your Mr. Boopsy-Woopsy is even more of a stone-cold killer than we originally thought.
From this story in USA Today:
That mouse carcass Kitty presents you with is just the tip of a very bloody iceberg. When researchers attached kittycams to house cats, they found a secret world of slaughter. While only 30% of roaming house cats kill prey — two animals a week on average — they are still slaying more wildlife than previously believed, according to research from the University of Georgia. Wildlife advocates say it is a frightening level of feline foul play.
Based on a U.S. house-cat population of 74 million, “cat predation is one of the reasons why one in three American birds species are in decline,” says George Fenwick, president of American Bird Conservancy. “The previous estimates were probably too conservative because they didn’t include the animals that cats ate or left behind,” University of Georgia researcher Kerrie Anne Loyd says.
According to the story, university researchers teamed up with National Geographic to build 60 tiny wearable “cat cameras,” which were then placed on 60 housecats in the Athens, Georgia area. Each cat’s activities were recorded for seven to 10 days. Each cat spent four to six hours a day outside, and boy did they make use of their free time. The results read like a cheap grindhouse slasher flick: Lizards, snakes and frogs made up 41 percent of the total kills, small mammals comprised 25 percent, insects and worms were 20 percent and birds totaled 12 percent of kitty prey. The cats brought home 25 percent of their kill, ate 30 percent, and left almost half of their victims where they killed them.
Thoughts? And remember, those numbers are for housecats, you know, pets. It doesn’t take into account the massive number of feral cats roaming the countryside.