Want to do your part in the fight against feral cats in Australia? Of course you do! You can help researchers figure out what is actually happening on the ground by participating in the National Feral Cat Control Survey.
Richard Faulkner and the School of Global, Urban and Social Studies team from Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University, is conducting this first national survey into feral cat control. “No-one has yet looked at the number of cats being culled each year on a national scale. The survey is also a first in capturing the broader effort and understanding of feral cats at a national scale,” said Mr Faulkner. “Shooters have been recognised as a known and respected feral cat management tool. Shooters may even be a highly under-utilised resource. This survey could help to identify that shooters can play a major role in helping to mitigate the threat of feral cats.”
As most of our members already know, feral cats are a huge problem for native species. In fact, Australia has the highest extinction rate of native species on Earth. “The impact of feral cats has been recognised as one of the major threats to Australia’s native and endangered wildlife. In many cases, feral cats could be the final threat that causes a species to become extinct,” said Mr Faulkner.
Feral cats are the focus of this study because in comparison to other invasive species, very little is known about the effort that goes into managing feral cats. “The survey will help capture an understanding of national feral cat management and inform us of how and where to focus effort for better control of feral cats,” said Mr Faulkner. “The Federal Government has also set a target of 150,000 feral cats to be culled annually. This survey will help to estimate how close we are as a nation to reaching that target.”
At the completion of the study, Mr Faulkner and his team hope to have an in-depth understanding of feral cat management issues across Australia. With that information, we can better coordinate our own efforts and potentially gain more recognition for the valuable conservation work that law-abiding firearm owners and hunters do for the environment.
Take the National Feral Cat Control Survey now. The survey only takes five minutes and no identifying questions are asked. Survey submissions close on August 7.