Target: Mayor Kevin Faulconer, San Diego
Goal: Don’t trap and shoot friendly, semi-tame cat colony.
A proposed roundup in the Mission Bay area of San Diego could result in the barbaric killing of stray cats by nearly any means deemed appropriate, including the shooting of cats. This rushed agreement made between the City of San Diego and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services Division targets cats and other predatory species, including skunks and raccoons, in order to protect endangered birds. The intended proposal will involve the placement of traps throughout the Mission Bay area, and could threaten a well-maintained and beloved feral cat colony.
Mission Bay has been home to a controlled cat colony for decades. These so-called Jetty Cats are unlike most ferals in that they are highly acclimated to people, and many are friendly and unwary. Some have been dropped off by owners who could no longer care for them, or they are the descendants of former house-pets. A number of volunteer trappers and feeders help ensure the cats are all spayed and neutered, are fed, and have medical needs provided. Given enough time, the current cat colony will likely dwindle or disappear as its members pass away due to natural causes. The laying out of traps to capture these semi-tame cats, only to have them euthanized or possibly shot offsite, is cruel and unnecessary.
There is no need to target these cats or to indiscriminately target and kill predatory species in the name of saving birds who already have protected nesting grounds. When it comes to cats, rescue groups throughout the country have proven that humane Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) programs are far more effective in controlling feral cat populations. Please help to make a stand for feral cats and demand an end to this cruel measure which will endanger their lives.
Dear Mayor Faulconer,
I am writing to ask you to overturn an agreement which grants permission to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services Division to use lethal control to manage feral cats and other predatory species in Mission Bay. In placing these traps on beaches throughout the bay in the name of protecting endangered birds, you are in turn putting the lives of other species in peril.
I am concerned about the authority granted to the U.S. Department of Agriculture to use whatever means deemed appropriate to control cats and other animals such as raccoons, skunks, and opossums, including the shooting of said animals offsite by project officials. This is cruel and inhumane and should not be considered an acceptable means of control.
I am also concerned about trapped cats brought in for behavior evaluations being euthanized should they display any fearful or aggressive behavior. The stress of capture and transfer to a shelter would likely provoke such a response in almost any cat. The alternative of Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) has proven to work to reduce feral cat numbers nationwide, and globally.
I urge you to reconsider given the fact that there are already well-cared for and managed colonies of feral cats in Mission Bay. While I agree that the protection of endangered species is important, we should not cause harm to others in the process. For the welfare of all of the animals who call Mission Bay home, please call for an end to lethal control.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Brocken Inaglory