CQ split over coun­cil’s $10 cat scalp bounty –

‘Dis­gust­ing, cruel, about time’: read­ers

The Morning Bulletin - - FRONT PAGE - Am­ber Hooker am­ber.hooker@cap­news.com.au

CLAWS are out over a di­vi­sive call to cull Cen­tral Queens­land’s feral cats.

Within sec­onds of shar­ing news of the $10 price tag the Banana Shire has put on cat scalps, bat­tle­lines were drawn between the re­gion’s cat lovers and haters.

Within 3.5 hours, more than 1000 read­ers have voted in The Morn­ing Bul­letin’s on­line poll, which asked if putting a bounty on feral cats was the “right so­lu­tion”.

The ma­jor­ity of those who voted are in favour of the cull; 54% of the to­tal 1081 vot­ers as of 3.20pm yes­ter­day.

Of those, 29% (322 peo­ple) be­lieve the $10 bounty should be higher.

Closely be­hind them are the “there must be a bet­ter way” be­liev­ers, mak­ing up 43% of vot­ers (467 peo­ple).

You can still vote on­line, even if you are the 1% of peo­ple who didn’t care be­fore and “don’t care now”.

The ini­tial re­port out­lined the coun­cil had al­lo­cated $25,000 in its Land Pro­tec­tion bud­get to cover the cost of the bounty and would con­tinue the pro­gram un­til this fund­ing was ex­hausted.

The de­ci­sion has opened up dis­cus­sion on where to draw the line, with some com­men­ta­tors out­raged cats will pay the ul­ti­mate price for their own­ers’ de­ci­sions.

Lind­say Lakin said: “If peo­ple looked af­ter their cats we wouldn't be in this po­si­tion where they are pest and de­stroy­ing all other wildlife it's un­fair on the other wildlife they are killing ev­ery day.”

Other read­ers be­lieved scalp-happy hunters won’t dis­tin­guish between the do­mes­tic and feral fe­lines and in­dis­crim­i­nately kill the lot:

KIM­BER­LEY WHEELER: This is dis­gust­ing any jo blo will just find a cat (do­mes­tic or not) and get the money why don’t they fund de­sex­ing in­stead? TEAGHAN SMITH: Oh that's go­ing to end up like ev­ery other time it's been tried across the coun­try. Peo­ple trap pet cats on their lawns, kill them for the money. Good job. Ap­par­ently noth­ing has been learnt from the past.

Pete Tor­risi won­ders though, why cap the bounty at cats?

“This is a great idea and should be rolled out all over re­gional Aus­tralia,” he com­mented.

“The bounty should be widened to foxes and cane toads.”

Those who backed the cull said it was “about time”. LACH­LAN JAR­RETT: This is a great move taken to pre­serve our na­tive wildlife. Take the bounty away and it is still a great ini­tia­tive to sup­port the culling of a feral pest. I hope other coun­cils take this ac­tion on board. Bounty or not I’m still go­ing to do my best to cull the num­bers where I live.

But He­len Bant said there was a so­lu­tion which would make the cull re­dun­dant.

“Make de­sex­ing free prob­lem will de­crease,” she said.

The bounty should be widened to foxes and cane toads.

— Pete Tor­risi

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

UN­DER AT­TACK: Read­ers are di­vided on a Cen­tral Queens­land coun­cil’s call to cull feral cats.

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