21st June 2023
For the past two years we have been delivering Feral Cat information sessions with our partners to the community across Tasmania as part of our landscape projects. Our information session on 17th June in Triabunna was well attended and very informative. With support from specialists including partner the Centre for Invasive Species Solutions, we learnt how devastating feral cats, stray cats and even pet cats are to wildlife. On average a feral cat can kill 791 animals a year.
Image: Can we get the cat back in the bag?
Some key take-aways from the session:
- We learnt about the diseases that feral cats carry, Toxoplasmosis and Sarcocystis, and the cost that these diseases have on the agricultural sector in Tasmania.
- Toxoplasmosis alone is estimated to cost the state $6 million* a year (*2016 $$) from ewe miscarriages and barren ewes.
- The key to action is to have a cat management plan, talk to your neighbors, follow the legislation and arrange to take caught cats to a registered cat management facility.
- Other management options:
- Have a secure offal pit on farms that is inaccessible to cats
- Plant lots of ground cover such as Lomandra and Poa species to give native animals a hiding place
- Promote responsible cat ownership for pet cats
- Some useful resources:
Missed the session? We are holding a Feral Cat Information and Workshop day in Huonville on Saturday the 1st July. Register here.
This workshop is part of Landcare Tasmania's Landscape Restoration and Community Outreach programs funded by the State Government's Landcare Action Grants Additional Projects Round.
Thanks to the support of the Centre for Invasive Species Solutions for their valuable contributions.
Building on our Feral Cat info sessions, Landcare Tasmania joined Tamar NRM's On Farm Forums for a Feral Cats on Farms session on 2nd June. This forum was aimed at Landcare, community groups and farmers in the Tamar Valley region who want to gain a greater understanding of what is involved in managing feral cats either on their own property, or on land they manage.
Our project officer Cynthia Schaap spoke about the role of Landcare Tas and feral cat management. There was a fantastic selection of expert speakers:
- Gill Basnett, National Feral Cat and Fox Coordinator - Impacts on wildlife, legislation and planning
- John Bowden, Consultant - Cat trapping techniques and tools
- Peter Voller, President of the West Tamar Landcare – West Tamar Landcare project case study
- Simon Pahor, Effective Conservation Outcomes - Use of firearms – techniques, licenses, permits etc
- Dr Stephen Pefanis & Helen Hawkins, Veterinary Pathologists, NRE- Agriculture impacts (toxoplasmosis and sarcosporidiosis)
- Dr Helen Morgan - Conservation Programs Ecologist - Tasmanian Land Conservancy – Eastern Barred Bandicoot Recovery Project including use of scientific monitoring tools (motion sensor cameras) and the value of citizen science programs
These sustainable agriculture workshops focus on topics relevant to small and new land holders, such as fire, forestry, fences, soil, succession planning, water, waste and weeds. You can check out their upcoming forums here: www.tamarnrm.com.au/on-farm-forums
Image: Gill Basnett sharing expertise