Australia plans to exterminate 20 million cats by 2020

Mohammad Hakim, News Reporter

In the last 200 years, Australia lost 29 unique mammal species with feral cats being major contributor to this steep decline. In July 2015, the Australian government announced the five-year plan of killing approximately two million feral cats by 2020. The move was part of a plan to save endangered native wildlife including 30 plants, 20 mammals and 20 bird species from extinction. Feral cats are responsible for the decline of native mammal and bird species. The feral cat has been listed as a harmful pest and would be killed by shooting, poisoning and baiting. The strategy also includes the installation of 10 feral cat-free zones costing around $750,000 to create safe habitat areas for the endangered species. The estimated 20 million feral cats in Australia pose an enormous threat to native species, with an estimated five native animals killed by one feral cat daily. The priority list of mammal species requiring protection includes Kangaroo Island dunnart, numbat, eastern barred bandicoot, mountain pygmy-possum, golden bandicoot, eastern bettong, brush-tailed rabbit-rat, mala, western quoll and greater bilby. In the last 200 years, Australia lost 29 unique mammal species with feral cats as major contributors in the steep decline.

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