My friend Pat Keeble in Martinez regularly reads many British newspapers. She also passes along some pretty interesting subjects as they come up. Like this one below. /Gary
Electronic tracking will test scientists’ theory that Britain’s 9 million feline pets slay 150 million animals a year.
Special tags to measure how often cats kill
By Robin McKie, science editor
The Observer, Sunday 15 February 2009
“Wildlife researchers have hired the services of some unusual helpers: 200 neighborhood cats equipped with electronic tags. The animals have been recruited in an attempt to discover how much wildlife destruction is wrought by feline pets.
“Some experts believe Britain’s 9 million cats could be killing more than 150 million birds, mice, rabbits, moles and other creatures every year. For species such as the house sparrow — whose numbers are dwindling sharply — cat predation could be a serious threat. Others, however, say cats mainly kill sick, weak or old creatures and are not a major problem.
“The Reading University project, led by Rebecca Dulieu, a biologist, has been set up to provide answers, using electronic tracking and computing analysis to monitor cat movements in unprecedented detail. ‘We know what cats do in our homes — they sleep,’ said Dulieu. ‘But we have virtually no idea of what they get up to outdoors, particularly at night. Now we can find out.’”
You can finish the rest of this interesting story here:
So what do you think? Is this study going to find out that cats are wiping out the wild bird population as well as many other wild mammal, reptile and amphibian species?
What do you think? /Gary