Pets creating natural imbalance
TO THE EDITORS:
People who purport to love animals or call themselves "animal lovers,'' love their cat, dog, caged bird or any animal that can be purchased, petted or held. This has created an imbalance in nature, sustaining domestic selections while harming the natural order of life.
The same person who carefully maintains a hummingbird feeder will also let "Fluffy" go outside to eat grass and roam. What farmer doesn't have cats breeding on his property, as well as birdhouses for nesting birds?
Researchers say domestic cats are the single greatest source of human-related bird deaths. Scientists from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and the Fish and Wildlife Service have concluded domestic cats in the United States, both pets and strays, kill a median of 2.4 billion birds and 12.3 billion mammals a year. Nature magazine estimates domestic cats kill 1.4-3.7 billion birds and 6.9-20.7 billion mammals annually. No matter what study you read, the number of outdoor animals killed annually by cats is in the billions.
Love of animals is a value worth giving thought to. Keep your pets indoors, so that the interconnectedness of natural outdoor life may flourish and a balance restored.