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Cats 1,100 times as deadly to wildlife as lead poisoning?
Gun Watch ^
| 27 May, 2017
| Dean Weingarten
Posted on 05/27/2017 6:26:38 AM PDT by marktwain
The number of animals that die from lead poisoning because of lead projectiles or lead sinkers on fishing tackle, is highly disputed. The high end estimates are about 10-20 million a year in the United States. Let us put that into perspective.
Cats kill birds and small animals. Lead poisoning kills some birds and animals. Animals are killed in collisions with vehicles on our roads. All animals die. How significant are these numbers? In Internet wanderings I came across some numbers that show that estimates of the deaths by these various means are pretty wild.
The articles claimed a median of 15 million birds and animals killed by lead poisoning, vs. a median of 16.95 billion killed by domestic and feral cats. That is 1,130 birds and animals killed by domestic and feral housecats for each bird or animals killed by lead poisoning. In addition, it has been claimed that 365 million birds and animals are killed in collisions with vehicles on our roads. That would be about 24 times as many killed by lead poisoning.
(Washington, D.C., January 29, 2013) A new peer-reviewed study published today and authored by scientists from two of the world's leading science and wildlife organizations the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) has found that bird and mammal mortality caused by outdoor cats is much higher than has been widely reported, with annual bird mortality now estimated to be 1.3 to 4.0 billion and mammal mortality likely 6.3 to 22.3 billion individuals.USATODAY source
An estimated 10 million to 20 million birds and other animals die each year from lead poisoning in the United States. This occurs when animals scavenge on carcasses shot and contaminated with lead bullet fragments, or pick up and eat spent lead-shot pellets or lost fishing weights, mistaking them for food or grit. Some animals die a painful death from lead poisoning while others suffer for years from its debilitating effects.This article claims that 1 million animals are killed every day in vehicle/animal highway collisions in the United States.
That is 365 million animals killed on the road vs. 15 million killed by lead poisoning.
But consider that there are about 10-20 billion birds alive in the U.S. at any one moment. There are probably about 1-5 times as many mammals as birds, so a rough estimate would be 40 billion mammals, about double that for reptiles, and about the same for amphibians as reptiles. Say 80 billion reptiles and 80 billion amphibians.
This gives us a very rough estimate of animals in the United States, not counting fish, insects, arthropods, or protozoans, of about 215 billion animals living at one time. Very, very, few of those animals will live longer than five years. Most will only live about a year (small mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians have very short life expectancies).
For the sake of argument, let us assume an absurdly long life expectancy of five years. That would mean about 43 billion animals die every year. Almost none of them die of old age in nature. Most are killed and eaten. A great many die in accidents.
Of the 43 billion that die every year, the top end estimate for lead poisoning is 20 million. Using that number, .047 percent of animals that die in the U.S. each year die of lead poisoning, while 39% are killed by domesticated and feral cats, and .84 percent die in vehicle collisions.
I suspect the numbers are absurd. They only serve to make the point that the numbers of animals that die of lead poisoning are a virtually irrelevant percentage of the number of animals that die every year, whether man has anything to do with it or not.
I do not believe that cats kill almost four of ten birds and animals that die in the U.S. every year. I doubt if the actual figure is even a tenth of that.
The reality is that life and death are intertwined. You cannot have birds without killing other birds, fish, insects, or ungerminated innocent seeds.
The best we can hope to do is to be good stewards of the land, increasing fertility and attempting to keep animal populations from getting completely out of control.
In the United States, because of irrigation and fertilizers, there is much more productive land than ever before. Biomass has greatly increased. Some animals did not fare well, others benefited enormously. The whitetail deer and coyote populations have soared. Bison and wolf populations plummeted. Rock Doves (domestic pigeons) are numerous. The passenger pigeon became extinct.
The small percentages that die because of the intervention of man are more than made up for by the large increase in animal population that occurs because of the incredible increase in the fertility of the land. Man's intervention has made the United States far more fertile than it would be without man.
And that is a good thing.
©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.
TOPICS: Outdoors; Pets/Animals; Science; Society
KEYWORDS: birds; cathater; cats; lead; mansbestfriend; roadkill
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Cats certainly kill enourmous numbers of birds and small animals. They seem to enjoy killing them, often taking as much time as they can to extend the process. They are superb predators.
But I do not believe they kill nearly 17 billion birds and animals every year in the United States.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:26:38 AM PDT
Agree, an extrapolated number. However, just in case, I keep my pussy indoors.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:28:14 AM PDT
I came across this video below the other day.
This kitty kills and eats a mouse...the whole darned thing! It was amazing to me even though I have had cats my *whole* life. Pretty darned gruesome!
My Cat Kills Mice:
Personally, I wouldn’t have let my cats do this, even though I know they enjoy it and it’s natural. I would be afraid of them getting some kind of intestinal parasite, and I don’t like to see a little animal being tortured. I use humane traps for mice, and set them loose on the trail.
Cats are bad for the environment. Guns are bad for the environment. Now, a cat with a gun...that's the worst!
posted on 05/27/2017 6:35:45 AM PDT
by Leaning Right
(I have already previewed or do not wish to preview this composition.)
posted on 05/27/2017 6:36:50 AM PDT
(The above is not a statement of fact. It is either satire or opinion. Or both.)
On our acreage we have tons of birds of all kinds. The cats come during the night and kill many. What I hate is they don’t kill to eat or because they are hungry, but just for the sake of killing.
Last week as I was mowing, however, I found the remains of a cat consisting of his tail, two paws and internal organs. Apparently some other animal “skinned the cat” during the night hours.
Just nature I guess.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:36:51 AM PDT
We have a strictly indoor house cat, and loved to watch the squirrels, chip monks and birds out of our windows.
Then mommy cat came along with kittens. How cute. So we fixed them up with a shelter and started feeding them.
Squirrels are gone, so are the chipmonks. A few birds still come to the feeders.
I’m in the process of getting rid of the outside cats.
Lefties in a neighboring town are neutering feral cats as a humane act to let them continue to kill off what little birds remain there. The leftist nut jobs do not realize that some of those birds are close to being endangered.
Any time the left quotes a number or percentage to support their position I assume that they just pulled it out of their...hat.
Like their number of “homeless” or the percentage of homosexuals, or the number of children going hungry every day.
With the left, everything is fair in love and war, and we know they don’t love us so they are at war with us.
The shame of it is that we have lawmakers that pass laws based on these lies.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:39:06 AM PDT
(US out of the UN, UN out of the US)
Imagine how many vermin animals there would be without our beloved cats.
Not that my cats hunt anything except cat toys, although I have had some good hunters in the past.
I hate these articles written by cat haters, who go on about the supposed carnage that cats wreak, while completely omitting the reason cats are domesticated in the first place: our ancestors prized their skill at removing vermin.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:41:12 AM PDT
(Current visual of the hole the US continues to dig itself into: http://www.usdebtclock.org/)
We have a feral neighborhood cat who we captured and had sterilized. She walks around our houses catching all the mice. None of us have had any mouse problems for the last three years.
One of my neighbors keeps cat food and water out for her so that she doesn't eat the squirrels.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:43:15 AM PDT
(Where's Reagan when we need him? Look in the mirror - the spirit of The Gipper lives within you.)
They seem to enjoy killing them,
That has about the same validity as talking about how dogs enjoy killing smaller animals. Regardless, cats more than earn their keep by reducing the population of disease bearing rats and other rodents.
One of my cats averages about a kill every month I know of. Moles he just kills. Birds, squirrels (we're overrun with them) and rats he will sometimes eat. And he usually brings them to the front door step. Sometimes he just brings the head or half of whatever critter he killed. I guess he's just supplementing his diet with fresh meat.
But I have seen him sit and watch a foraging squirrel, with it's back to the cat, 3 feet away, and the cat does nothing.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:44:52 AM PDT
(Build the damn wall...)
Too many birds are a health hazard just as too many filthy rats or mice. The cats do the job God put them here for.
To: Colonel Kangaroo
“Cats kill birds and small animals. Lead poisoning kills some birds and animals.”.......
In particular the lead (.22 cal size) kills cats that come anywhere near my yard. I live in a very rural area and cats are often dropped off or wander into our area in search of “food”, they don’t last long.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:52:19 AM PDT
Many people who like to hunt do not always hunt for food. They hunt for sport.
So are you saying a cat cannot hunt for sport?
If you worry about bird, and I love birds, worry about all the stupid windmills killing birds.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:52:38 AM PDT
The other thing they won’t tell you is that domestic cats simply filled the niche previously held by bobcats. When bobcat populations fell because of hunting, trapping, and farmers shooting them on sight, the domestics took over. Now, there are many stories of wild bobcat populations rebounding, and gradually adapting to human presence, and moving back into urban areas.
Some of them (such as the bobcats at River Legacy Park in Arlington TX), are showing initial signs of self-domestication.
posted on 05/27/2017 6:53:39 AM PDT
("All great truths are hard and bitter, but lies... are sweeter than wild honey" (Ragnar Redbeard))
Sounds like a Cat-astrophe
posted on 05/27/2017 6:56:54 AM PDT
(SMASH THE CPUSA-SIC SEMPER TYRANNIS-CLOSE ALL MOSQUES)
Good to see somebody is protecting the innocent rats and mice from the mean cats on your property. And you never know when a pack of cats will attack a child.
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