Watch your cat

Our research on invasion complexes has focused, in the past, on the impact of predators, such as feral cats, and their prey, such as rats and rabbits, on islands. While feral cat removal is not necessarily positive, since it may result in counterintuitive effects (such as mesopredator release), their potential impact on native species requires attention and a more stringent regulatory framework.

Indeed, a recent study of the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and the Fish and Wildlife Service estimated that domestic cats in the United States kill a median of 2.4 billion birds and 12.3 billion mammals a year, most of them native mammals. We hope that this study will help convincing our authorities to pay more attention to the issue.