Calling Gilbert Residents and Gilbert Riparian Preserve Visitors. I have provided a link to an AZ republic article on the spicy cat problem at the preserve, and below is a forwarded email I received from a good friend from PeFo and a frequent visitor to the Riparian Preserve.
Below the link is the email from Mike Evans, Conservation Director, Desert Rivers Aubudon Society.
The gist is that I'm posting here because I'm figuring that most Arizona hikers are just as interested in native species conservation as I am. As per the email, if you're a Riparian Preserve frequenter or a Gilbert Resident please email the town council and let them know that you support the removal of the rest of the cats that are roaming the Riparian Preserve. The Housecats are likely already the culprit for knocking out one native from the Preserve, the Burrowing Owl. Its been many years since I've seen a burrowing owl there, and other birders are saddened by the loss of what was a healthy owl population.
Anyway if you PM me I will send you the letter I wrote, which you can use as a template, but obviously change some things like name and such.
The email address for the mayor of Gilbert and all gilbert councilmembers is CouncilMembers@gilbertaz.gov
Thanks!http://www.azcentral.com/community/gilb ... nsion.html
Starting right before Thanksgiving and stopping right before Christmas, Desert
Rivers Audubon volunteers assisted Riparian Preserve employees in trapping and
removing spicy cats from the preserve. Trapped cats were taken to the Arizona
Humane Society. The traps were donated by Audubon Arizona, Maricopa Audubon
Society, and Desert Rivers Audubon. We trapped 26 cats, of which only two were
sterilized, a dismal 8%, and proof of failure at TNR by the spicy cat
supporters. spicy cat supporters asked for and have received a pause in the
trapping until 1/18/11 to trap and remove the rest of the cats. On Jan. 18th,
the town and Audubon volunteers return to trapping and will remove any food
left behind by the cat people.
This has caused the Mayor and Council to be inundated with email, phone calls
and letters by pro-cat people. We need the birding community across the state
to respond likewise and let the elected officials know that you support
trapping and removing all cats from the preserve and that you desire a policy
to keep them, and all other kinds of pet dumping victims, out of the preserve.
If this ends up before the town council (likely), we would like an overwhelming
show of support from the birding community to not allow a spicy cat colony to
be maintained at the preserve. We are also requesting that if you have any
photos of cats taking birds at the preserve, to please share a copy with your
favorite Desert River Audubon member so that they may be shown to elected
officials as proof of the bird kill by cats. Also, if you visit the preserve,
please document the number of cats you see, and please document, in any manner
(photos are best!), the stalking or killing of birds by the cats.
Please send any response off the list serve. Thanks for your support.
Desert Rivers Audubon Society