Letter: Free-roaming cats have caused great damage in bird population


Diane Pleninger’s recent letters (Feb. 3, Feb. 11, Feb. 16) show that, intentionally or not, she is missing the point when it comes to cats and wild birds (and other wildlife). She’s become hung up on statistical analysis, when the key point is this: There are many human-related causes of wild bird mortality and the evidence shows that one of the chief causes is the irresponsible behavior of cat owners.

Free-roaming household cats and feral cats are an invasive species introduced by people into natural ecosystems and they kill a huge number of birds and small mammals. As Timothy Sell pointed out in his letter (Feb. 14), there is evidence that such cats have caused or contributed to the extinction of numerous bird species around the world, by some counts more than 30. And scientific studies show that they kill huge numbers of wild animals in the U.S.

The bottom line is that here’s yet one more way that humans diminish our planet’s wildlife and its diversity of species. And there is a simple solution to the problem: neuter cats and keep them indoors. What is so hard to understand about that?

— Bill Sherwonit