THE newly formed Bombala Cat Action Team (CAT) is preparing to tackle the town’s homeless cat problem.
CAT coordinator Heather Brown said she hopes to reduce the number of cats and kittens that roam the streets – estimated to be more than 100 – by catching, desexing and rehoming them.
“We are trying to approach this from an environmental point of view,” Mrs Brown said.
“If we can get kittens at a young age off the street then we will hopefully see more wildlife in our local community.”
Mrs Brown said she hopes the community understands the impact cats can have on the environment.
“I’ve had a couple of people come up to me on the streets and say they know that cats only kill two or three birds a day,” she said.
“But if there are more than a hundred stray cats in Bombala at the moment then that is a lot of native birds they are feeding on each day.”
Mrs Brown also hopes cleaning up the cat population will also improve tourism and the general appearance of Bombala’s streets.
“I’ve had a few comments from the public that cats are going through public garbage bins at night and pulling litter out on the street,” she said.
“There have also been comments from tourists that the streets smell because of the cats.”
In the last month Ms Brown has caught 19 kittens from behind the supermarket and there are still more to capture from that location.
The CAT project will endeavour to capture the cats and kittens that live on the streets and desex, microchip, tame and rehome them.
Already she has 12 kittens in the process of being tamed and hopes to get the project up and operating before spring starts.
“We will try to tame and rehome adults but often that is harder and unfortunately there will be some circumstances where we will have to euthanise them,” Mrs Brown said.
“This is an unfortunate aspect of the job but it’s not a great life on the streets for a cat anyway.
“We have had a few kittens who were successfully tamed right away and others were a little harder.”
Mrs Brown encourages residents to be responsible pet owners and desex their own pets.
The CAT project’s next step is start fundraising so that they can desex and microchip the animals they capture.
They are also in need of foster homes.
To volunteer or donate please call Mrs Brown on 6458 3904.