Source: The Mercury 30 June, 1994, p.9

Cats get a bad
press: survey

Cats were not the killers
 of native wildlife that 
many believed them to be, 
a survey commissioned by 
the Pet Care Information 
and Advisory Service has 

Pet Care national director 
Tony Cooke said the survey 
by Reark Research Pty. Ltd. 
examined the population 
characteristics and hunting 
behaviour of Australian 
domestic cats.

He said the survey found 
cats caught 4.67 prey per 
year, of which 1.57 were 
native and 3.10 introduced 

Half of all creatures 
caught were vermin.

More than 4000 households 
were surveyed and all capit-
al cities revealed a declin-
ing cat population, except 
Hobart which showed a 2 per 
cent rise.

Among factors likely to affect 
cat-hunting behaviour, the 
confinement of cats to the 
house at night seemed to be 
effective but bell collars 
were not.

Mr. Cooke said he was sur-
prised at the number of desex-
ed cats - 92 per cent nation-
ally and 72 per cent in Hobart.

Also of surprise was the age 
of cats, with 13.7 per cent 
being over 12 years of age.

"It is obvious a lot of 
people are being very 
responsible looking after 
their cats, so hopefully we 
can get them to do a few more 
things such as keeping their 
cats inside at night", Mr. 
Cooke said.

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