From the Forum – In need of a Thursday feeder for a community cat colony

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In need of a Thursday feeder for a community cat colony

“I help take care of a community cat colony in Petworth by feeding them once a week. They are all sterilized, vaccinated and doing well. We’ve lost our Thursday feeder and are in need of someone to step in. It’s very easy – all you need to do is set out some food and water. No cat experience is needed. I’m happy to supply the food if that’s a concern.

Many thanks,
[email protected]

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17 Comment

  • Accountering

    Serious question: Is not one of the benefits of alley cats is that they kill mice? I don’t mean to be flippant, but that seems like a pretty big positive to having cats running around right?
    Does feeding them once a week keep them healthy, and then they just take down mice for snacks here and there?

      • Accountering

        This feels like great news to me. If these cats are running around killing thousands of mice every day, I think they should be anointed the new city mascot. These little killers are heroes if you ask me!

      • The studies cited in that Huffington Post article are poorly done. I’m not claiming that no cat ever kills a bird or rat, but I would hope that it’s clear from all the other easily accessible scientific evidence that humans are the number one cause of death of any species of animal due to habitat loss (93% of critically endangered bird species affected, BirdLife International 2008), the use of pesticides (70 million birds die annually, USDA), collisions with windows (100 million birds die annually, USDA).

        I feel like it’s fairly clear that despite any predator’s nature to hunt an animal for food, humans are absolutely the biggest threat to all species.

    • I read it differently: It sounds to me like OP feeds them one day a week, others feed them the remaining six days, and the Thursday feeder has dropped out.

  • anonymouse_dianne

    Contact Alley Cat Allies. They are local in Bethesda and can help you network with other CC folks. And Erin is right, habitat loss is the greatest source of kill-off. For song birds specifically, it is deer eating the undergrowth which is their habitat, not community cats.

    • Second. Alley Cat Allies may be able to assist in connecting you with other local advocates, etc who could help on Thursdays.

  • While cats may not be the BIGGEST killer of birds, they are certainly a significant, non-native, artificially abundant predator. And the people who feed cats in the alleys are also feeding and attracting rats. I’ve seen food set out for these “cat colonies” where the cats and the rats are essentially eating side by side.

    • People who feed alley cats RESPONSIBLY do so by feeding them only during daylight, setting out food only while the cats are there to eat it and then promptly removing it, etc. It sounds like what you’ve seen is the work of someone irresponsible, not someone adhering to the proper procedures.

      • Exactly. I was not excited about the ferals being fed in the alley behind my house at first, but have come to understand that trap/neuter/release (and feed) is a practical plan to deal with the inevitable population of cats. Responsible people feed in the daytime and remove leftover food. (Plus there is so much garbage around that rats flourish regardless. And most garbage tastes better than cat food.)

        • Agreed on TNR. Humans are the ones who — by not spaying/neutering and by abandoning their pets — have created a population of feral cats. We owe it to the cats to take care of them and make their short lives a little less miserable.
          Improper feeding of feral cats could certainly aggravate a rat problem… but the biggest factor with rats is humans not storing their trash properly.

  • Spay and neuter at 6 months!

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