As an incredibly biased cat owner who treats his furry masters with a reverence comparable to that of the ancient Egyptians, I’m incredibly protective of my mogs. So imagine my horror when new statistics released revealed that domestic cats in the United States are responsible for the deaths of 3.7 billion birds and more than 20 billion small mammals every year. Our tiny, cute, internet meme worthy kitties are in fact the deadliest predator and decimators of other species on the planet outside of humanity. In fact – they’re doing more damage than we are!
The biologists working on the new study estimate that there are roughly 84 million owned cats living in the US, and that there are 30-80 million un-owned cats, which include feral cats, barn cats, and cats who are not allowed inside.
The researchers “estimate that free-ranging domestic cats kill 1.4–3.7 billion birds and 6.9–20.7 billion mammals annually” and emphasize that “un-owned cats” who have to fend for themselves are the invasive species responsible for wiping out the birds and rodents in their native environments. Each feral cat by comparison (30 million and 80 million of them live in the United States) is estimated at kills between 23 and 46 birds a year, and between 129 and 338 small mammals.
An further yet: according to previous studies and observations: domestic outside cats kill between 30 and 47 birds and as many as 299 small mammals — mice, voles, and other Redwall denizens, mostly — per cat every year and according to NatureCommunications Cats have already been implicated in 33 modern bird, mammal, and reptile extinctions.
That’s right folks, Fluffy may be super cute, but she’s also the deadliest assassin known to man! The paper concludes that Cats:
“are likely the single greatest source of anthropogenic mortality for US birds and mammals.”
Worse than humans, and we really don’t have a great track record for being good to the environment and not killing stuff now do we.
New Zealand has an active campaign to ban cats as pets altogether in what seems to be something of a ‘cat cull’ though the researchers suggest that in order to dip the alarming figures the simpler solution would to be keeping cats indoors.
Ancient Egyptians used to worship cats as gods, and the irony isn’t lost that despite the fact that they are super cute with little baby sounding miaows and head nudges to rub us in their scent that makes us think they’re our pals, they’re probably closer to the Devil! The wee creeps.
Tags: cats, evil cats, killer cats