Browsing the archives for the Wisconsin Study tag

Stanley Temple Endorses Smithsonian/USFWS Paper

It came as some surprise, a couple weeks ago, to learn that Stanley Temple was a guest on WHYY’s Radio Times, discussing the Smithsonian’s “killer cat study.” (Full disclosure: I’ve yet to listen to the episode.) Temple was, as I’m sure most readers know, the man behind the infamous Wisconsin Study (from which, not surprisingly, [...]

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Fight or Flight?

“Cat Fight,” which appears in the latest issue of Conservation magazine, does little to cut through the rhetoric or clear up the numerous misrepresentations that plague the debate over free-roaming cats.

There is, it’s often said, no such thing as bad PR. Even so, I’m not thrilled with the way I’m portrayed in an article appearing [...]

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Blowback

Oh what a tangled web we weave,
When first we practise to deceive!
—Sir Walter Scott
Wind turbine near Walnut, Iowa. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons and Bill Whittaker.
Two stories from New York Times writer Elisabeth Rosenthal caught my eye this past Monday. The first, “Tweety Was Right: Cats Are a Bird’s No. 1 Enemy”—the latest recounting of [...]

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A House Deluded

On February 25th, the Utah House of Representatives voted rather decisively—44 to 28—in favor of HB 210, which would amend the state’s animal cruelty laws. Whether or not the representatives knew what they were voting for, however, is anybody’s guess.
Listening to the floor debate, one gets the impression there were two—maybe three—different bills up for [...]

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Best Available Science?

After a while, I suppose, such things will no longer surprise me.
A couple weeks ago, the American Bird Conservancy released a statement in support of the Florida Keys National Wildlife Refuges Complex Integrated Predator Management Plan/Draft Environmental Assessment proposed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS):
“American Bird Conservancy, the nation’s leading bird conservation organization, [...]

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Keys: To the Future

Below is a slightly reformatted version of the comments I submitted in response to the Florida Keys National Wildlife Refuges Complex Integrated Predator Management Plan/Draft Environmental Assessment. A PDF version is available here.
•     •     •
To Whom It May Concern:
I am writing to comment on the Florida Keys National Wildlife Refuges Complex Integrated Predator Management [...]

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Politics, Religion, and Witch Hunts

I don’t mean to take anything away from Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart, but it sometimes seems as if our politicians craft legislation with the sole intent of scoring priceless airtime on the The Colbert Report or The Daily Show. Little wonder these shows are both incredibly popular and enduring: the material just keeps coming.
And, [...]

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Revisiting “Reassessment”

“Reassessment: A Closer Look at ‘Critical Assessment of Claims Regarding Management of Feral Cats by Trap-Neuter-Return’” has been revised and expanded!

This paper, a brief review and critique of the essay “Critical Assessment of Claims Regarding Management of Feral Cats by Trap-Neuter-Return” by Travis Longcore, Catherine Rich, and Lauren M. Sullivan, now includes sections [...]

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American Bird Con

For years now, the American Bird Conservancy (ABC) has been promoting erroneous and misleading information in their tireless effort to vilify free-roaming cats. No organization has been more effective at working the anti-TNR pseudoscience into a message neatly packaged for the mainstream media, and eventual consumption by the general public. Speaking to the Wall Street [...]

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Inside Job

Results from the American Pet Products Association’s 2009­­–2010 National Pet Owners Survey suggest that cats in this country are spending more time indoors than ever before. Although the proportion of owners keeping their cats inside at night has remained relatively steady since 1998 (at approximately 66%), their has been a 14% increase in daytime confinement [...]

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Repeat After Me

Listening to NPR’s On the Media this weekend, I was struck by a story (first broadcast in 2006) about how certain “sticky” numbers—however dubious—find their way into the media landscape and beyond, as On the Media co-host Brooke Gladstone noted:
“Four years ago, we delved into the mysterious number, said to be 50,000, of child predators [...]

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The Work Speaks—Part 4: Mean Spirited

In April, Conservation Biology published a comment authored by Christopher A. Lepczyk, Nico Dauphiné, David M. Bird, Sheila Conant, Robert J. Cooper, David C. Duffy, Pamela Jo Hatley, Peter P. Marra, Elizabeth Stone, and Stanley A. [...]

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The Work Speaks—Part 1: Lost in Translation

In April, Conservation Biology published a comment authored by Christopher A. Lepczyk, Nico Dauphiné, David M. Bird, Sheila Conant, Robert J. Cooper, David C. Duffy, Pamela Jo Hatley, Peter P. Marra, Elizabeth Stone, and Stanley A. Temple. In it, the authors “applaud the recent essay by Longcore et [...]

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No-Kill Austin? Not So Fast.

In March, Austin made headlines when its city council voted to adopt “Recommendations for the Implementation Plan to Reduce Animal Intake and Increase Live Animal Outcomes,” also known as the “No Kill Plan.” Over the weekend, it became clear just what an accomplishment this was, when Austin American-Statesman writer Mike Leggett devoted his column to [...]

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A Critical Assessment of “Critical Assessment”—Part 2

The second in a series of posts that breaks down my critique of the essay “Critical Assessment of Claims Regarding Management of Feral Cats by Trap-Neuter-Return” (Conservation Biology, Volume 23, No. 4, 887–894) by Travis Longcore, Catherine Rich, and Lauren M. Sullivan.
Like so many others interested in blaming cats for declining bird [...]

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A Critical Assessment of “Critical Assessment”—Part 1

The first in a series of posts that breaks down my critique of the essay “Critical Assessment of Claims Regarding Management of Feral Cats by Trap-Neuter-Return” (Conservation Biology, Volume 23, No. 4, 887–894) by Travis Longcore, Catherine Rich, and Lauren M. Sullivan.
How many birds are killed by cats? It’s a fair question. And if Longcore [...]

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