Cats Face Ban To Protect Wildlife

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Cats face ban to protect wildlife
10th September 2018

By Karen Pickwick



Pet cats could be banned from a region in New Zealand as part of proposals designed to protect native wildlife.

According to a report in the Independent, under Environment Southland’s ‘pest plan’, cat owners in the small coastal village of Omaui will have to neuter, microchip and register their pets with the local authority.

And after their cat dies, they will not be allowed to have another.

The proposals have angered local residents, who accused the council of behaving ‘like a police state’.

But the local authority wants to protect 230 hectares of lowland and forest on Omauri that is home to small native birds including the fantail, brown creeper, grey warbler and shining cuckoo kingfisher, as well as larger ones such as the tui.

Biosecurity operations manager Ali Meade told national news outlet Newshub: “There’s cats getting into the native bush, they’re preying on native birds, they’re taking insects, they’re taking reptiles, all sorts of things. They’re doing quite a bit of damage.”

Submissions on the Southland regional pest management plan can be made until October 23, but residents have already said they will petition against the proposals.
Nico Jarvis told the Otago Daily Times that owning a cat was the only way to manage rat infestations in the area.

‘’If I cannot have a cat, it almost becomes unhealthy for me to live in my house,’’ she said.