Thursday, May 12, 2005

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Casey's House cats throw a party
Clarke Times Courier, VA
The fun starts May 21 at 9 a.m., at Casey's House. Cindy Ingram and her husband, Timothy, turned the second floor of their garage on Pine Grove Road near Bluemont into a cat shelter a year ago. Since then 42 homeless, discarded, abandoned and lost cats have moved in – warmth, shelter, health care and two square meals a day. Next door in the main house are 14 more of Ingram's "special needs" boarders – older cats who need daily medication or treatment.[Excerpt]
The West Virginia "bridge cats" are here – a wild colony that struggled day to day under the Route 9 bridge.
None of this comes free. Not even cheap. . . . . .
Donations are welcome and tax deductible – food, litter boxes and litter, blankets or just plain money.

Robben Island's cats shot to save birds
Independent Online, South Africa
... The rapidly growing number of feral cats on the famous island was raised as a concern by a United Nations monitoring team after a visit in February last year ...
About 50 cats on Robben Island have been shot in the past few weeks in an effort to save the island's seabirds. There are still about 40 wild cats left, but not all will be killed. The plan is to capture 12, have them sterilised and inoculated and then re-released on the island to control the number of black rats, which are another invasive species causing ecological problems.

The shooting is being done by one of the experts from the successful cat eradication programme during the 1980s and early 1990s that cleared South Africa's Marion Island of an estimated 3,400 cats that were killing tens of thousands of seabirds annually.It was hailed as one of the world's most successful island species restoration projects.

If you call two decades, millions of dollars, shootings, poisonings and infecting with disease, 'successful.'

”During an earlier eradication programme on Robben Island in 1999, the number of feral cats was reduced to about six, but these animals survived and bred.”

So intelligent, humans of the advanced thinking ability! Earth may function best when man is removed from management.

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Feral Cat Blog! Resources:

The Marion Island Cat Eradication Program. This is story of how 5 house cats were introduced to remote Marion Island in 1949, multiplying to 3,400 cats by 1977, and how it took 19 years to rid the island of them.
The Cat Eradication Program
Five domestic cats, including a castrated, orange striped male tabby and a black and white female together with three kittens were introduced during 1949 on Marion Island. These felines were brought to the island to help eradicate a mouse problem in the base. As cats do they soon multiplied and the first feral cat was seen in 1951. By 1975 the population had increased to more than 2,000 cats feeding on thousands of burrowing petrels, a much easier prey than the mice they were supposed to hunt. In 1975 alone the cats ate just under half a million birds and species such as the Common Diving Petrel, the Soft Plumage Petrel and the Grey Petrel became extinct on Marion IsIand. With other remaining bird species also at risk it was decided to initiate the Marion Island Cat Eradication Program. In 1977 the entire cat population was estimated around 3,405 individuals. A few animals were infected with the highly specific disease feline panleucopenia. By 1982 there were an estimated 615 cats remaining. During the spring of 1986 a secondary control measure in the form of nocturnal hunting was initiated on full scale. For three summers, eight two-man teams using battery-operated spotlights and 12-bore shotguns killed approximately 803 cats in total. The progressive decrease in hunting success and the sighting rate of cats suggested that hunting alone was no longer sufficient in reducing the numbers. Traps were usedand between 1989 and 1991 the remaining cats were removed. During the 12-month period post April 1991, only eight cats were trapped and three trapping teams recorded no sightings. It is now believed that complete eradication of feral cats on Marion Island has been achieved after 19 years.

A Review of Feral Cat Eradication on Islands.
Conservation Biology 18 (2), 310-319.
doi: 10.1111/
Abstract: Feral cats are directly responsible for a large percentage of global extinctions, particularly on islands. We reviewed feral cat eradication programs with the intent of providing information for future island conservation actions. Most insular cat introductions date from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, whereas successful eradication programs have been carried out in the last 30 years, most in the last decade. Globally, feral cats have been removed from at least 48 islands: 16 in Baja California (Mexico), 10 in New Zealand, 5 in Australia, 4 in the Pacific Ocean, 4 in Seychelles, 3 in the sub-Antarctic, 3 in Macaronesia (Atlantic Ocean), 2 in Mauritius, and 1 in the Caribbean. The majority of these islands (75%; n= 36) are small ( 5 km2). The largest successful eradication campaign took place on Marion Island (290 km2), but cats have been successfully removed from only 10 islands (21%) of 10 km2. On Cousine Island (Seychelles) cat density reached 243 cats/km2, but on most islands densities did not exceed 79.2 cats/km2 (n= 22; 81%). The most common methods in successful eradication programs were trapping and hunting (often with dogs; 91% from a total of 43 islands). Frequently, these methods were used together. Other methods included poisoning (1080; monofluoracetate in fish baits; n= 13; 31%), secondary poisoning from poisoned rats (n= 4; 10%), and introduction of viral disease (feline panleucopaenia; n= 2; 5%). Impacts from cat predation and, more recently, the benefits of cat eradications have been increasingly documented. These impacts and benefits, combined with the continued success of eradication campaigns on larger islands, show the value and role of feral cat eradications in biodiversity conservation. However, new and more efficient techniques used in combination with current techniques will likely be needed for success on larger islands.

A review of the successful eradication of feral cats from sub-Antarctic Marion Island, Southern Indian Ocean
Bester, M.N.Bloomer, J.P.Van Aarde, R.J.Erasmus, B.H.Van Rensburg, P.J.J.Skinner, J.D.Howell, P.G.Naude, T.W. 65-73
South African Journal of Wildlife Research, Volume 32, Issue 1, April 2002
Abstract: This paper reviews the history of the feral cat eradication programme on sub-Antarctic Marion Island based on unpublished minutes of meetings, reports, letters, theses and published scientific papers; and reflects on the outcome of the eradication campaign. The 19-year programme comprised seven phases, commencing with a description of the effect of the cats on the Marion Island ecosystem, the characteristics of the cat population and the formulation of a management policy (phase 1: 1974-1976). Methods for control were selected and preparations were made for the implementation of the primary control measure, biological control with the feline panleucopaenia virus (phase 2: 1976/77). The virus was released in 1977 (phase 3: 1977), followed by the determination of its effects (phase 4:1977-1980). Monitoring of the effects of the virus continued, and the secondary control measure of hunting at night was tested (phase 5: 1981-1983). Full-scale implementation of hunting and continued monitoring of the effects of both the disease and hunting followed (phase 6: 1986-1989). The inclusion of intensive trapping and poisoning as tertiary control measures culminated in the final eradication of cats from Marion Island in 1991 (phase 7:1989-1993).
downloadable pdf file:

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