River Wissey Lovell Fuller

Beware Of The Cat

January 2003

Nature's Marmite

I was very interested in Mike Mann's article on "Facts" in the November issue. The fact that really hit home was that household cats kill, amongst other creatures, 60-80 million birds a year.

When we moved up here some six years ago, one of our great delights was the bird life, and the different number of species. In fact, I wrote an article for the Pump mentioning that we had identified forty different types of birds. However, this year we have suffered an invasion of about eight cats a day passing through our garden, and en route killing many birds. One morning, in the space of two hours, two doves and a starling met their maker. The upshot is that, apart from the occasional robin or blackbird, we have no bird life at all. Food put out for them is eventually eaten by hedgehogs or insects.

I am in awe of nature's evolutionary chain but I am at a loss to understand the cat. All animals (with the exception of dolphins and killer whales, I believe) kill to eat. Cats, though, kill for sport, so-called, as they are well-fed by their doting owners. Why should this be? Maybe Darwin came up with a theory but unfortunately I haven't read his work.

All I can say is that any cat entering my territory now is given short shrift and whereas I would never hurt an animal, I will certainly get through to it that it is not in the least bit welcome!

Graham Forster

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