Remember, all non native species to go … we’ve been hearing murmurs of doing away with cats for some time now, thanks particularly to Gareth Morgan. In Aussie they’re dropping 1080 laced sausages for them. Moving along everywhere isn’t it. Still, shooting them in a built up area is hardly responsible is it? EWR
SHOOTER HIRED FOR CAT CULL
A controlled cat culling in a South Waikato town in which “feral cats” were shot has alarmed nearby residents who say it’s unsafe to be shooting in such a built up area.
There were also concerns that their own pets could easily have been mistakenly shot.
Residents in Tokoroa’s Clyde St, which has a primary school and kindergarten, were horrified to learn numerous so-called feral cats had recently been shot in the area.
Senior Sergeant Jason Henderson confirmed a professional pest controller had shot the cats with an air rifle designed for pest control purposes.
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He’s believed to have been hired by a local agency although who is behind the cull is mystery. Local shopkeepers, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), South Waikato District Council, and kindergarten have all denied being involved. Staff at the school said they were also not aware of the incident.
“As part of his processes he notified police of his activities which is done by all professionals working in the pest control industry but we do not give ‘permission’ … because there is no ‘permission’ to be given,” Henderson said.
“As professionals it is up to them to ensure all safety measures, appropriate equipment and considerations are taken into account.”
But residents spoken to by Stuff said they had no idea the operation was to take place.
“We’ve got a little kitten and although other cats do come around I wouldn’t go around shooting them,” he said.
“I’ve heard talk that an elderly couple in the street reported them which led to it being organised. It is very concerning.”
Community Animal Rescue and Education (CARE) operations manager Helen Rabinska was shocked on hearing cats in a residential area had been killed by a pest controller.
“There is no way a pest controller would be able to tell the difference between an unowned cat and one that has an owner,” she said.
“Legally a cat is someone’s property just like a car or television. You can not just go around shooting cats,” she said.
SPCA chief scientific officer Doctor Arnja Dale said the society was not informed about the planned cull.
“The SPCA is not, and has never been, a pest control agency and did not give permission for the culling of any cats, nor did we play any part in it,” she said
“If these cats were in contact with human habitation then they are stray cats, rather than feral,” she said.
South Waikato District Council communications manager Kerry Fabrie said the council was not involved and was powerless to intervene.
“There is no legislation governing cats, unlike the Dog Control Act which governs dogs which we enact,” she said.
Henderson said legal action was unlikely.
“Having spoken to the pest control contractor involved in this incident I am confident he covered off all his requirements,” he said.