New Zealand Council Wants To Ban All Cats As A Part Of Their "Pest Plan" Throughout The Country

8 Comments

In a radical effort to protect native wildlife, New Zealand authorities are proposing something unprecedented in our modern society: banning pet cats! Specifically, in the small coastal village of Omaui a proposal is in the works requiring current cat owners to neuter, microchip and register their pets with the local authority and according to the Environment Southland’s “pest plan”, cat owners would not be allowed to get another cat when their current cat(s) pass away!

This aggressive move comes in a dire effort from local authorities to protect 230 hectares of lowland and forest on Omauri. The area is home to quite a few native birds from small ones like the brown creeper, grey warbler, the fantail, and shining cuckoo kingfisher as well as larger birds like the tui! Local residents are outraged and have accused the local authority of acting as a "police state." 

Despite the argument from cat lovers in the area, local experts are very serious about the proposal.

Speaking to Newshub, a national news outlet, biosecurity operations manager Ali Meade said, "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.”

Local residents are ready to oppose, petition, and protest the proposal.

Nico Jarvis, a local resident spoke with Otago Daily Times to say that owning a cat was necessary for managing rat infestations in the area. She said, "if I cannot have a cat, it almost becomes unhealthy for me to live in my house!"

Jarvis, along with other members of the community understand the argument for conservation but argued nonetheless, "...but I think long-term, the ramifications of this are not something that even non-cat owners will be comfortable with. It’s like a police state.”

And what happens if someone violates the ban? Environment Southland will instruct people to remove the cat but are willing to, as an "absolute last resort," remove the cat themselves.

While people like Nico Jarvis are preparing a petition, Omaui Landcare Charitable Trust chairman John Collins is in full support of the cat ban, but not because he hates cats, but Omaui is a ''high-value conservation area," and "removing cats from the area would enable native animals to thrive," because they want their local environment to "be wildlife-rich."

Submissions are open until October 23rd, but New Zealand has been very ambitious about becoming "predator-free by 2050," with plans to eradicate species of possums, stoats, and rats. Wondering what will happen to the cats in Omaui is definitely something that global cat lovers will have their eyes on for the next couple of months!





8 Responses

Lisa Chestnutt
Lisa Chestnutt

October 02, 2018

I can understand TNR, mandatory spay and neuter, and even euthanizing very sick cats. But, to ban pet cats is utterly ridiculous. Automobiles kill birds, reptiles, and insects. Are you doing to ban those too. Just ban people. Irresponsible people are the real issue.

Lisa Chestnutt
Lisa Chestnutt

October 02, 2018

I can understand TNR, mandatory spay and neuter, and even euthanizing very sick cats. But, to ban pet cats is utterly ridiculous. Automobiles kill birds, reptiles, and insects. Are you doing to ban those too. Just ban people. Irresponsible people are the real issue.

Meghan Ryan
Meghan Ryan

October 02, 2018

Justice for cats

Kara
Kara

October 02, 2018

Cats do not deserve this

Hannah
Hannah

October 02, 2018

Couldn’t this ultimately result in more cats without homes on the street preying on native wildlife? It seems like a bad long term move personally. A lot of cats are going to end up as strays and unless they’re spayed or neutered they’re going to breed.

cookie fortner
cookie fortner

October 02, 2018

are they out of their mind, I wish them a lot of mice etc. and lets see what they doing than, what a stupid thing to even consider…..

Tammy Greygor
Tammy Greygor

October 02, 2018

Are these people completely insane or have they been indulging in the local wacky tobaccy? Who do they think they are to tell people what pet they can or can’t have? To me the real “menace” is the council members themselves!

Nikki
Nikki

October 02, 2018

Cats are just as lovable as dogs !!! This is Outrageous!!!! 😢😡

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