Jump to content
melbournebudgies

An Important Petition

Recommended Posts

A bit of off topic but perhaps relevant.

 

As you all can see in my signature I am very big into camp oven cooking. With that also goes native food cooking.

 

Every year in Alice Springs is a major Native Food Cooking Event. For the past few years, feral cat has had a category of it's own. People actually eat and enjoy them.

 

I thought I still had the article about this.

 

Last week's story

For sentimental reasons, Australians have been reluctant in recent years to eat kangaroo, but they should have no qualms about the latest delicacy on offer in Alice Springs: feral cat. Our gourmet correspondent, Dylan Welch, reports that a local children's book author, Kay Kessing, introduced it last weekend at the opening event in the Bushfoods Wildfoods Recipe Competition, served in a stew with quandong (wild peach). The competition coordinator, Linda Chellew, described the taste as "all right". "The judges all just bit the bullet and ate the cat," she reported. "I had to very politely go and spit it out in the back room, because I just couldn't break it down - it was pretty tough."

 

Kay Kessing, who lives on a bush property south of Alice Springs where feral cats wreak havoc on native animals, was inspired when she caught one in a trap 15 years ago. "When I started to skin and gut it, I thought the meat looked quite nice, and I knew the Aboriginal mob roast them on the fire and like them. I thought I'd have a go too, so I made a cat-erole."

 

Combined with her mother's "famous" red tomato chutney, the meal was a roaring success and Kay Kessing, 57, has been cooking cat ever since. She has even broadened her menu to include roast cat and mentions a friend who cooked cat sausages. And the taste? A cross between rabbit, chicken and goanna.

 

Kay Kessing's Cat'n quandong

Chop and saute two small - and deceased - feral cats until the meat is browned. Add a handful of native lemongrass, finely chopped, and salt and pepper. Then add three cups of dried quandongs, some rainwater and then saute in a crockpot. Cook on high for five hours. When serving, add some wild New Zealand spinach leaves. Garnish with mistletoe berries and bush plum.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This reminds me about a vicious article against my uni a while back, confusing our non-survival surgery prac classes, our greyhound blood donors and our surgical anatomy (dissection classes). It was all mixed up and spat out a totally unethical (and completely wrong) image of the vet students being butchers, breeding and killing dogs en masse on campus. The worst part was that the article appeared balanced and never actually told a lie, just stated facts in a way that led you to believe these things. People who read it took at face value and even when they found out we did terminal surgeries (one per student in our entire five year course), decided to boycot any vet from Melbourne uni. Well, they might as well boycot all vets, and while they're at it, never eat meat, use animal products, any medicine or makeup or anything!

 

But I digress.

This leads me to another interesting discussion I have had with my classmates and lecturers. The population of pet cats in Australia is actually decreasing. But feral cats live on. What's going on?

Is it because more cats are being released? Perhaps, but that's not just it. Part of the problem is that legislation and vets have been so efficient at educating owners and desexing cats that fewer and fewer pet cats are being born. While pet cats do contribute to the feral population, nothing is actually being done to stop the feral cats - they are the ones doing all the damage. The domestic cats get punished for it. It helps a bit, but is it enough?

The feral cats keep breeding and breeding and our mutually exclusive set of domestic cats has stopped breeding. We might catch and rehome a very small number of feral cats sometimes, which means we are moving our gene pool towards selecting cats that are slightly wild and prone to behaviour problems. Which would lead to more being released. Not only that but legislation is starting to look at permanent cat curfew to stop interbreeding. Thing is, that would lead to increased incidence of cat behaviour problems too.

The answer lies more in having a plan to stop the feral cats. The government punishes the pet cats and feels good, completely ignoring the wild ones. The problem continues. Why not a catch and spay operation to deal with the problem, instead of making our pet cats slowly more problematic as well?

 

Just an interesting discussion that has been going on at vet school.

Edited by Chrysocome

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This leads me to another interesting discussion I have had with my classmates and lecturers. The population of pet cats in Australia is actually decreasing. But feral cats live on. What's going on?

Is it because more cats are being released? Perhaps, but that's not just it. A large portion of the cause is that vets have been so efficient at educating owners and desexing cats that fewer and fewer pet cats are being born. While pet cats do contribute somewhat to the feral population, nothing is actually being done to stop the feral cats - they are the ones doing all the damage. The domestic cats get punished for it. It helps a bit, but is it enough?

The feral cats keep breeding and breeding and our mutually exclusive set of domestic cats has stopped breeding. We might catch and rehome a very small number of feral cats sometimes, which means we are moving our gene pool towards selecting cats that are slightly wild and prone to behaviour problems. Which would lead to more being released. Not only that but legislation is starting to look at permanent cat curfew to stop interbreeding. Thing is, that would lead to increased incidence of cat behaviour problems too.

The answer lies more in having a plan to stop the feral cats. The government punishes the pet cats and feels good, completely ignoring the wild ones. The problem continues. Why not a catch and spay operation to deal with the problem, instead of making our pet cats slowly more problematic as well?

 

Just an interesting discussion that has been going on at vet school.

 

Or we could just have what my dad suggests: a feral cat hunting season!

 

You could get vet students to spay feral cats so they can get some more 'practise'...not sure if that is ethical though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can probably answer that Chryso. The environmental funding in this country is a load of ****. There just isn't the funds to completely control them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The cats are cute, but I believe only Australian animals belong in Australia.

Too many foreign things polluting our country and destroying it's purity.

 

 

Savannah Cats Australia - http://www.savannahcats.com.au/

Edited by bird crazy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah MB, and that's quite important isn't it, it's also the reason why vet students won't be doing the spays - who is going to pay for drugs, machines, equipment, supervision (of both the student and the animal!), and then what do we do with them? Quite a dilemma. But I think if we sit back for much longer it's could get very much worse.

 

bird_crazy, what is your opinion of the vast proportions of our land taken up by farming?

Edited by Chrysocome

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In Vic atleast there is almost no land at all that is completely unalienated. The major problem with funding for cat control is that cats don't just live in areas under parks depts control, they live on privat property and they live in populated areas. They could kill every cat in the state and national parks and they could be repopulated from private land and vice versa.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why would anyone want to catch a feral cat and sterilise it ? and then do what with it ? Set it free again ? Cant fathom that one ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Feral cats have been able to adapt to pretty well all terains. However feral cats are more prolific in the desert and arid areas where they seem to be able to breed very quick. I recall a few years back when the army went out to try and do something about the feral cat population. Killed many of them yet seemed to have no effect on the overall poulation.

 

They are like a multiplying disease

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Why would anyone want to catch a feral cat and sterilise it ? and then do what with it ? Set it free again ? Cant fathom that one ;)

 

True, may as well just kill it in the first place. Though some people may not be happy about that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That Kaz is animal rights gone mad ;) In a local wildlife reserve here we have roos starving to death because there are too many of them but they can't get approval to cullthem because of animal rights issues. The activists suggestion is to feed them instead! How many roos do they think we will have then...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MB said it. People just won't allow mass killing of animals. Well, non-food ones anyway.

The catch-spay-release method seems to work for street dogs in Asia and I think they are doing it up in North Aus? If you release it the niche is still filled so a fertile animal won't replace it.

Edited by Chrysocome

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
MB said it. People just won't allow mass killing of animals. Well, non-food ones anyway.

The catch-spay-release method seems to work for street dogs in Asia and I think they are doing it up in North Aus? If you release it the niche is still filled so a fertile animal won't replace it.

How can anyone justify releasing a feral animal back into the wild to continue killing ?? The mind boggles ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How is catching an animal and letting it go again sterilised any different to sitting back and doing nothing at all?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well it's slightly better than doing nothing Chryso, atleast that animal will no longer contribute to the increase in numbers. Often they desex males as they are easier and quicker, the problem is that even one male will chase down many females to mate with,

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry Kaz, I agree with you, if it didn't sound like it. I am not against euthanasia of animals. However, I just don't see our society allowing the mass killing of healthy animals so I picked the next best option. If we can't euthanase them then sterilising them is better than doing nothing.

Edited by Chrysocome

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know - I saw it in the morning and was stunned at how big it was after uni!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For the dollar value of paying out to have them caught and sterilised and set free, they may as well be euthenased while caught instead. Anything else is designed to placate the do gooders who have soft hearts for anything that entails the word CULL in its truest form.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Exactly Kaz ;) Cost of spey-lots, cost of cull- 20c for a bullet

Edited by melbournebudgies

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I heard about that in the last few years Derek, interesting but one animal that I'm not real keen on cooking up (they smell)

The Gov or any dept dont have ongoing cat control in place as they do with dogs and foxes as feral cats arent scavengers that is they wont readily accept a bait or walk into a trap, they like to hunt and they like fresh food. Domestic and feral cats can also jump 2 mtrs so that is not just a thing the 'new' breed of cat can do.

Good luck with catching sterilising and rehoming a feral cat, let me know when you will try it and I will set the video camera up and run far far away!!!!

 

CAHEAO- there is a feral cat season it goes from 12am Jan 01 until 11.59pm Dec 31st!! Anytime of the day or night all year round, I like your dad! You will find most hunters despise feral cats and will go out of their way to get rid of any around, good thing for conservation.

I dont have a problem with cats in town if they are looked after and I have noticed a huge reduction in houses that own cats in the last 5-10 years. Not that the 'town' feral cat numbers is decreasing their population is healthy as ever- yes thats also a job I get to deal with.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Good luck with catching sterilising and rehoming a feral cat, let me know when you will try it and I will set the video camera up and run far far away!!!!

;) I wish I had a video of that day we went to catch the feral cat and her kittens living under our uni (yes, under, and only a few of us were small enough to get down there). The other problem was.. it was the last day of ten exams and we were all pretty tired and a little bit tipsy from celebrating! We did manage to get all the kittens though, most of them are now beloved pets of the students.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have also had the pleasure of trying to catch a feral cat. I used to work as a vet nurse for the vet that did the pound work in my town. We would have feral cats in traps brought in and he would euthinase them. One day he was trying to get an angle on the cat to put the needle in nd the door came lose and she escaped. This was a real country feral cat too, the kind that weighs about 8kg and will chase you and bite you rather than running away. Three of us vet nurses got the fun of catching her, it was not pretty and I came home with dozens of scratches and a tube of antiseptic cream that night . ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Passionate subject hey??

MB- that roo thing was ridiculous the way it got out of hand. They did a similar cull of rabbits in central park(?? i think thats the one), but they have only just let the public know after that fact, 12 months later!! Just have to keep the media out of it!

I laugh when I hear the activists say roo's are endangered they obviously dont get out the city too often.

 

Lol MB!!

Definately a certain way to get a feral cat out of a trap- quite similar to what the vet was trying but stand back a bit further

Edited by the pie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I laugh when I hear the activists say roo's are endangered they obviously dont get out the city too often.

 

They taste good. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×