Hundreds of cats killed in controversial hunt

Hundreds of cats killed in controversial hunt

A paid culling competition in North Canterbury, New Zealand, resulted in the deaths of 370 stray cats between June 29 and 30, about 100 more than last year, reports said. New Zealand HeraldThe event, which is open to adults and children over the age of 14, has been heavily criticised by animal rights activists.

In detail, the fundraiser was dedicated to a local school and swimming pool as well as to the most disadvantaged people. More than 1,500 people attended the event, including around 440 children under the age of 14, who were not supposed to be able to participate. Almost NZ$60,000 (€33,900) was raised. Meanwhile, the biggest hunter, who killed 65 cats, received NZ$500 (€282), and another participant who caught the biggest cat received NZ$1,000 (€565).

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Problem cat

Originally, this large-scale charity hunt only included deer, pigs, ducks, opossums and rabbits. But since 2023, it has also been open to wild cats. As event organizer Matt Bailey said, these predators, left in too large numbers, threaten local wildlife and livestock, and carry diseases.

“But unfortunately, New Zealand is a cat-loving country, so we had disagreements from different groups,” he added regretfully. Watchman It also notes that the country has one of the highest rates of cat ownership per capita in the world.

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stoning activists

Activists from the Animal Rescue Movement were present at the site. One of their videos shows young children taking part in the hunt. The activists were attacked before being forced to flee after being stoned, the site reported. New Zealand Herald.

“There is nothing conservative about encouraging children to kill animals and people trying to throw dead possums at us,” said Sarah Jackson, one of the activists. guardian.

“normal country life”

In response, the organizer defended himself by asserting that this was “normal rural life.” He also noted that measures had been taken to ensure that domestic cats were not targeted, by keeping them 10 kilometers away from residential areas.

In addition, they had to be trapped first, examined, and then killed with a .22 caliber rifle, at the very least, for humane slaughter. However, both camps today want to change the legislation regarding the sterilization and abandonment of domestic cats.

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