ShareThis Page
Home & Garden

Pussy cat predators

| Saturday, May 16, 2009

Bird-feeding has an entirely different meaning for cats.

After all, they are the ones doing the feeding.

Steve Holmer, a spokesman for the American Bird Conservancy in Washington, D.C., says "there is no real way of keeping count" but believes cats kill about 200 million birds a year.

His group is behind Cats Indoors!, a campaign to have owners keep their pets indoors, particularly in early morning and in the evening when birds are on the ground more to feed.

"This is one of the unintended consequences of bird-feeding," he says.

He estimates there are 200 million cats in the United States, with 90 million being pets and the remainder feral.

Erin Estell , manager of community outreach for the National Aviary in the North Side, agrees and says the cat issue should be greatly considered by anyone interested in bird-feeding.

The secret, she and Holmer say, is to keep feeders away from places where cats can leap. That also means making sure feeding sites are not near brush or shrubbery.

"Cats just lurk in there and pounce," Holmer says.

Additional Information:

Feeding birds

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me