Feral Cats (Felis catus)
Feral Cats (Felis catus) are domestic Cats that have gone wild or are offspring from such animals. They tend to live in colonies, often around industrial premises, hospitals or in residential areas. Some colonies are completely free living, whilst others are fed, at least in part, by people.
The Key Features About Feral Cats…
The legal status of Feral Cats (Felis catus) can be difficult to establish. It has been shown that domestic Cat’s will join feral colonies for a few hours at a time, before returning to their familiar home. Any management measures are considerate of this fact and measures are taken to ensure that domestic animals are released.
When managing sizable Feral Cat colonies which are reliant on artificial feeding, where possible it is beneficial to have cooperation with the feeders in order to gain the best results and cause the Cat’s the least distress.
In addition the involvement of a respected vet and Cats Protection will aid any decisions on homing, surgical sterilisation and release.
Feral Cats (Felis catus) Significance of Control…
Feral Cats (Felis catus) colonies can carry a range of diseases that place people at risk, particularly if this occurs in hospitals, food production sites and other high risk areas. In addition they cause significant unpleasant fouling, smell and contamination. Feral Cats can also be aggressive and interfere with the management of areas where ducting and other habitats that they occupy need to be visited by electricians, plumbers, cleaners and other trades.
The population management of Feral Cats (Felis catus) involves cage trapping and surgical sterilisation of animals proven to not be domesticated. Following this the aim is to rehabilitate and home where possible or release them back into the ares from which they were removed. This strategy can stabilise a colony and over a period of time, lead to reduction in the colony size, as Cat’s dying of natural causes are not replaced.
This strategy supported by Cat’s Protection and helps to manage populations in the most humane and least intrusive way. All trapping activities are carried out in compliance with the Code of Practice for the Disposal of Feral Cats as stipulated by the BPCA.
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