Thursday, January 20, 2011

Surprise! Cats kill!

My cat, Mr. Misi, displays his inner killer

"Conspiracies Don't Kill Birds. People, However, Do.," the title of a recent piece in the New York Times declares. The article reports that US Fish & Wildlife research shows that "some of the biggest death traps" for songbirds in the United States are the jaws and claws of domestic and feral cats. The author dubs the USFWS finding "surprising," but it shouldn't be. Folks surprised by this report are either innocently ignorant of wildlife (and of the wild within the lives we've tenuously domesticated) or they willfully deny the ambivalent violence that animates so much life, cat, bird, and human included.

Read the NY Times piece, then revisit "i taut i taw a putty tat," an HH post from April 13, 2005, in which I discuss some of the realities of cat predation and make it clear that, though I'm a cat lover par excellence, our nation's songbirds, small mammals, and reptiles need us to stop playing favorites.

Photo credit: Hungry Hyaena, 2004

1 comment:

andiscandis said...

Toonces never killed a damn thing. He once caught a chipmunk who played dead until he put it in his bowl... then it bolted. Toonces looked very confused. Why wouldn't the chipmunk just stay there?