Posted by: lokahipath | June 30, 2011

Birth Control for Cat Man’s Cats!!!

The Kauai County Council has passed a Resolution(in June 2011) addressing Kauai’s feral cat population, which is out of control.

Apparently, USFWS doesn’t like this resolution.  We agree it is not appropriate to relocate cats everywhere on this island.

“By adopting this program it will be counterproductive to protect our endangered species,” said Michael Mitchell, United States Fish and Wildlife Service Deputy Project Manager for the Kaua‘i Refuge Complex.

Mitchell said a much cheaper and more successful program would be to trap and remove the cats.

We support the spaying and neutering of homeless cats, we DO NOT support the release of feral cats to wild lands that support endangered, threatened and protected species like Hawaiian monk seals, green sea turtles, Laysan albatross and wedgetailed shearwaters.

We agree with USFWS:

Scientists, she said, estimate that free-roaming cats kill hundreds of millions of birds, small mammals, reptiles and amphibians each year.

“I fight every single day to save the last shearwaters, and these cats are eating them, these cats are killing them,” said Kaaumoana, adding that she spends a lot of time on litigation and mitigation. “And I have cats.”

The Kaua‘i Refuge Complex consists of three refuges, according to Mitchell. The refuges include 140 acres in Hule‘ia, 117 acres in Hanalei and 202 acres in Kilauea.

Mitchell, who is also a biologist, said that between mid-2008 and mid-2009 his staff trapped 95 feral cats from the three wildlife refuges combined. He said some studies estimate feral cats eat one bird a day, which would translate to 28,500 birds killed by those 95 cats in 300 days.

Many of the cats necropsied, or autopsied, by the USFW staff, Mitchell said, had native birds inside their stomach.

“Placing those animals back in the wild is a really bad idea,” said Mitchell, adding that even a well-managed colony, where cats are fed everyday, will harbor predators, because cats will still hunt due to their nature.

A Big Island radio-tracking study showed that male cats can range up to eight square miles, and females up to three square miles, according to Mitchell, who said the range could be even larger if there is not enough prey in the area.

Lepeuli is not an appropriate place to release spayed cats. They need to be removed from Lepeuli, not returned. This is absurd!!! and constitutes “harassment”: of protected species.Signs are posted for dogs, but not cats. Domestic, disease carrying predators are not appropriate for relocation to endangered species habitats.

Lepeuli has has an “unauthorized” permanent resident for over 15 years -the Cat Man. He supports a population of several dozen cats in coastal Lepeuli.The Cat Man generates a huge rubbish problem and complex social issues, but the County of Kauai SHOULD NOT encourage and enable his cat population to impact protected species at Lepeuli.

When USFWS Wildlife Biologist Brenda Zaun was stationed at the Kilauea Lighthouse, there was a trapping and relocation program of these cats. Now we are allowing his cattery to exist (some spayed and released).

Who is responsible for the potential “Take” of protected species?
The Cat Man?
The County of Kauai who re-releases the cats to Lepeuli?
Waioli for allowing the Cat Man to raise cats and rubbish at Lepeuli for 15 years?
Paradise Ranch, who attempts to control camping and cats with cows?

NOAA is considering expanding the Critical Habitat for Hawaiian Monk Seals to 5 meters mauka of the shoreline. Cats’ toxoplasmosis is lethal to Hawaiian monk seals. Why are we relocating cats to one of the most critical Hawaiian Monk seal pupping areas?

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