Date: 31 January 2013
Cat spying a bird feeder
The well-known businessman and philanthropist, Gareth Morgan, recently launched a public campaign to reduce the impact of cats on native wildlife. He is advocating for responsible cat ownership and is encouraging people to consider not replacing pet cats when they die.
DOC is not involved in this campaign, but we do support responsible cat ownership and management of stray/feral cat impacts in urban areas and outside of conservation land.
Cats are a threat to native species. If we find cats on conservation land we treat them as pests.
In his campaign Gareth highlights that cats catch and kill more wildlife each year than many cat owners realise. Cats living near bush and wilderness areas can cause extensive damage. This isn’t just a threat to native birds, but also insects and reptiles.
Although controversial, we appreciate the work Mr Morgan is doing to bring environmental issues and the plight of our native species to the attention of New Zealanders.
We also firmly believe that we must be respectful of cat owners and their rights, and remain sensitive to the love people have for their pets.