Alley Cat Allies: Protect Cats in the National Key Deer Refuge

April 20th, 2007 2:32 pm by Kelly Garbato

UPDATE, 5/25/07, via Alley Cat Allies:

Alley Cat Allies has been working day and night to stop an inhumane and ineffective plan to remove feral cats residing within the National Key Deer Refuge in southern Florida. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is wrongly claiming that the feral cats are responsible for the diminished population of marsh rabbits.

Backing off from their original plan of trapping and killing these cats, the Fish and Wildlife Service now plans to trap the cats and take them to a shelter. We all know that 71.6% of cats in shelters are killed.

The Fish and Wildlife Service has also stated that trapped cats are likely to remain unprotected in the traps for as long as 12 hours, leaving them exposed to lethal swarms of red ants.

Now, in a last-minute effort to save countless feral cats, we have appealed to Playboy founder Hugh Hefner, an animal lover, for help – asking him to publicly denounce the killing and urge the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to allow a nonlethal management program to humanely reduce the cat population. Marsh rabbits (Sylvilagus palustris hefneri) in the Florida Key Deer National Refuge were named for Mr. Hefner, after he financed the 1980 research study that identified the species.

As a supporter of Alley Cat Allies and feral cats, you know that the only long term solution to managing these feral cats and their environment is to implement a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) program.

Weird. Just…weird.

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UPDATE, 5/10/07, via Alley Cat Allies:

Recently, we wrote to you about the National Key Deer Refuge in Florida, where the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is planning to trap and kill the feral cats. The U.S Fish and Wildlife Service claims that they have not yet begun the process of trapping and killing but will begin in the middle of May. Feral cat advocates have fought for several years to prevent this from happening – still the authorities are insistent. Your help is needed. While the refuge may not be located near you, it is federally protected land, which legally belongs to all of us. Please take action to tell your federal representatives that killing cats on federal land is ineffective, inhumane, and inappropriate.

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Via Alley Cat Allies:

Protect Cats in the National Key Deer Refuge

Effective immediately, the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service has begun the process of trapping and killing feral cats residing within the National Key Deer Refuge in southern Florida. Feral cat advocates have fought for several years to prevent harm to these cats – still the authorities are insistent. Take Action – contact your federal representatives today and tell them you oppose killing cats on federal lands.

These feral cats are being singled out as the reason for a diminished population of marsh rabbits; while the main reasons for their depopulation is habitat loss. Studies done on feral cats and their impact on indigenous species are often misleading and can cause knee-jerk reactions by authorities. These reactions can result in inhumane and ineffective actions! You can read more about feral cats and wildlife on the Alley Cat Allies website.

The only long term solution to managing feral cats and their environment is to implement a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) program.

Your help is needed. While the refuge may not be located near you, it is federally protected land, which legally belongs to all of us. With that in mind, take action to let your federal representatives and the Florida delegation of representatives know that killing cats on federal land, as a form of management, is ineffective, inhumane, and inappropriate.

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One Response to “Alley Cat Allies: Protect Cats in the National Key Deer Refuge”

  1. Are Cats Bad for the Environment?  | SHOAH Says:

    [...] Los Angeles (where it failed miserably in the past) and make it illegal to remove ferals from a wildlife refuge in South Florida, where the cats have taken a major toll on anendangered woodrat. “These [...]

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