The councillors of Omaui on the southern coast of the South Island of New Zealand are seriously considering banning all domestic cats to protect native wildlife.
It is the first time any jurisdiction has discussed a complete ban of all cats. John Collins of the Omaui Landcare Trust sums it up in his statement:
“We’re not cat haters….But we’d like to see responsible pet ownership and this really isn’t the place for cats….”
They call it a ‘pest plan’. They value wildlife over domestic cats. Some residents are shocked as it is so uncompromising. Never before has such a black and white proposal for legislation been debated.
One resident, Nico Jarvis, says she needs her cats to keep rats away. Without her three cats her home would become unhealthy she says. She thinks it has become a police state.
New Zealand as a whole wants to become predator free by 2050. They want to wipe out introduced species such as rats and stoats.
There is a war on against the wandering domestic and feral cat in this country. For instance, there is a ‘no cat’ rule in Kapiti Island’s Kotuku Parks subdivision and Auckland council is planning to euthanise all non-microchipped cats wandering in ecologically significant sites.
You may remember NZ parliamentary candidate Dr Morgan whose views about exterminating cats went viral. There is a mood in New Zealand which is hostile to the domestic and feral cat.
Where is Omaui?
“Omaui is a small coastal village in Southland region, New Zealand. It is located approximately 20 km southwest of Invercargill near a small estuary opposite Sandy Point between Invercargill and Bluff..” – Wikipedia