Savannah's Paw Tracks

Autobiography of a Former Shelter Cat

Archive for the category “TNR”

Cat shooting not ended: East Bay Regional Parks #justiceforoakportcats


I won’t write such a long post about this situation as I did last week, purromise. But—I want my readers to be up to date on what has or actually hasn’t, happened since my Monday December 14 blog post. First, the East Bay Regional Parks (EBRP) Board of Directors (BOD) suspended all shooting of feral/abandoned community cats on their properties until they get some committee put together to “study this problem”!!! HAH!!! EBRP established the policy to shoot to kill any feral/abandoned cats they find on their regional park land TWENTY FIVE YEARS AGO! YES!! They have been carrying this slaughter out for twenty five years and this is the first time they got caught!

Cat is relieved to finally be safe and not hunted

Mom L has not received a reply to her many emails, but my pals Miss Carolyn in Wales, Austin’s mum, and Miss Marjorie in New Zealand did!!! And very soon after the BOD held their meeting Wednesday December 16. The reply is from the about to retire General Manager who is likely the person who instituted this tragic policy. All I hear are excuses in his words, what do you hear? Let me know in comments please!

The Reply:

On behalf of the East Bay Regional Park District Board and staff, we understand the community’s concern regarding the recent removal of feral cats from protected habitat at Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline. We have received much correspondence from the public on this issue and will be reviewing our practices and policies of our Wildlife Management Program, as we have a legal responsibility to protect endangered or listed wildlife species to help avoid the extinction of these valuable resources.

On Thursday, December 10, 2020, I directed the temporary suspension of some feral cat removal practices by staff in our parks until the protocol can be discussed openly and transparently with the Park District Board of Directors. The occasional use of dispatching practices for the removal of cats to protect threatened and endangered species is the exception and not the rule and only happens when other options such as trapping are unsuccessful. These rare actions are fully permitted and authorized legal actions.

Martin Luther King Jr. Regional Shoreline, located near the Oakland Airport, is a sensitive ecological area and stop along the Pacific Flyway where thousands of birds annually nest, including several protected species: Ridgway’s rail, California black rail, least terns, burrowing owls, and the salt marsh harvest mouse. The California Ridgeway rail is located only in the San Francisco Bay Area, with only 900 breeding pairs estimated to be left. The California black rail is listed as a threatened species due to the loss, destruction, and degradation of their brackish and saltwater wetland habitats. It is one of the smallest rail species in the world. Both species are protected under the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Moving forward, we commit to providing more public education about the threat cats pose to protected species at risk from extinction. We also commit to working more closely with Oakland Animal Services and some of their affiliate rescue and shelter organizations: Hayward Animal Services, Berkeley Animal Care Services, Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter, City of Fremont Animal Services, and Tri-City Animal Shelter to assist in the removal of cats from regional parks.

We need the public’s assistance in keeping predatory cats out of all regional parks. Domestic cats don’t deserve a life in the wild. Protected species that the Park District works tirelessly to conserve do not deserve to be hunted by domesticated cats. 

We invite you to learn more about wildlife management and the impact of feral and abandoned cats.

Finally, please never leave or feed cats in parks – it is illegal, and you can be cited! By working together, endangered species and feral cats can continue to thrive…separately.

Thank you,

Robert Doyle
East Bay Regional Park District General Manager

All the supposed scientific research papers he cites are dated 2004-2013, hardly cutting edge. And, the articles he’s cited aren’t even original research—they’re somebody else’s interpretation of various studies (and those are poor quality).  Upon reading this reply, Peter J Wolf, a well known research and policy analyst with Best Friends Society had these observations:
I’m struck by the fact that, despite all of EBRPD’s talk of endangered species—and Ridgeway’s rail in particular—there’s no mention of cats killing birds. Not even stalking them. No mention of predation of any kind, in fact.  

One would like to think that the case for lethal removal—which the District describes as “the exception and not the rule, only after other options such as trapping are unsuccessful”—would require some compelling evidence. Instead, it seems, EBRPD secretly killed at least 18 cats because such an outcome was a possibility. And a relatively remote one at that, given the distances the cats would need to travel to the parts of the park where Ridgeway’s rails tend to congregate. 

I can’t help but think—and to be clear, I have no evidence of this—that shooting the cats had little to do with protecting any specific wildlife. I think this was about sending a message to caregivers. Only when their activities were brought to light did they play the endangered species card.

This cat colony was in large part far from being “feral”. The EBRP’s people only had to reach out to the caretaker and she could have trapped them all and made sure they were safe. Their caretaker has been able to get many adopted and others are waiting for adoption. Here is Charles in his new home after pretending he was a scared feral cat. Hee Hee!

I am liking being back inside!

Here are three more beauties that are available for adoption through Island Cat Resources and Adoption. Please share all these kitties and help them get to their forever homes quickly. Teddy is chilling on someone’s shoulder, Dianna is showing off her diva look and Abe is ready to play!

If you have not already written to the EBRP BOD, please do try to find the time to help us get #justiceforoakportcats and write to the BOD members listed below.

Ward 1 Board Member: Elizabeth Echols;
Ward 2 Board Member: Dee Rosario;
Ward 3 Board Member: Dennis Waespi;
Ward 4 Board Member: Ellen Corbett;
Ward 5 Board Member: Ayn Wieskamp;
Ward 6 Board Member: Beverly Lane;
Ward 7 Board Member: Colin Coffey;


Cat Colony Nipped!


I know I have mentioned our new foster kitten, Pipsqueak aka Pip (to family and furriends) and how he came to be with us.  He was one of the first of seven kittens that we trapped for TNR. As you know from my post, he is no way “feral” and now ready for adoption.

That said, Mom L and Dad P and I have been relentless in helping residents in our city with making sure this “little” colony of eleven cats/kittens doesn’t get any bigger!!

Check out this darling little family, relaxing in the backyard of the resident who had been so diligent and accommodating in helping us TNR as many as we can.

We had our work cut out for us. We originally found four residents who were feeding this cute little GROWING family. All have been on board in helping us trap over the last seven weeks.

And we have success!! So far no pregnant females. We have TNR’d three adult males, and three kitten males and one female kitten. We have socialized one male kitten, our sweet new foster kitten Pipsqueak, now ready for his forever home and adoption!

Here are the kitties we have helped to control this growing cat colony. Our greatest challenge is trapping and spaying the mom cat, we have named Marmee. She is very trap savvy.

First up is Bruiser! No on told us about this big “bad boy” until he became the one and only we trapped in our first night trapping. Totally awesome, handsome mancat; not longer able to produce kittens!!

Bruiser’s release

Next up: Rocky kitten who was very vocal in his protest at being trapped!!

Rocky release

Next up, dear sweet Uncle George, Marmee’s kitten from last year.

George’s release

Then we trapped Kong!! Marmee’s son from last year! What a big guy!!

Kong’s release

We trapped Ringo same night we caught Kong. You can see he has the same trap injury to his sweet nose. Sadly that happens sometimes and our darling foster Pipsqueak is only just able to start regrowing his furrs from a similar injury.

Ringo release

Our last kitten trapped was a girl!! Darling Ellie, named by the family’s son where they all hang out. She was simply too old at this point to socialize. Sadly we had to release her just today.

Ellie’s release

We hope to trap two more this week. Marmee, the mom cat, may be ongoing challenge so wish us good fortune!!

Let us know in comments how you manage your challenges in trapping a very trap savvy kitty!!


Pee Ess…please share our foster Pipsqueak to help us help him find his forever home. I would appreciate it it you will grab the badge below and SHARE SHARE SHARE all over the world to help bring Pip the pawsitive energy he will need to find his forever home. We have treated his right eye for the infection but it is taking a while to fully recover. He has no loss of sight in that eye, but we know it shows as less bright than his left eye. We fear no one will want this sweetie as he is “less than” purrfect. Please, please help us help him find his forever home. More about Pip later.



TNR during Covid19: Another story


I just know my readers are going to be innerested in the work Mom L and Dad P and I have been doing through our Project Delta View Cats (PDVC) group. You know I posted about our efforts to rescue kittens, spay mom cats, while our municipal shelter remains in modified shut down.

We received a distressed request from residents in our city of Pittsburg, CA about a mom cat and her one baby they had just started feeding in their apartment complex. They asked if we could possible help them get mom cat and kitten trapped and spayed/neutered and then coach them about how to try to socialize both mom cat and kitten!! We were on board for sure!!

Mom cat and kitten were living in a tiny crawl space under one of the apartment buildings, right next to the loudest air conditioning units you can imagine. Those units a clear in the video above.

The residents were able to trap the kitten, and then use the kitten’s cries to entice mom cat into a trap. YAY!! Now we are able to help both of them.

She appears to be a lynx point type Siamese kitty. The surgery clinic believed she is only about eight to ten months old herself. She weighed about five pounds.

The residents named mom cat “Conchita” and the kitten “Tomas”. In the photo above Conchita is safe back from her spay surgery and as you can see, she is very scared.

Tomas on the other paw, within two days of being brought inside and after his own surgery, was happy to receive a very gentle ear cleaning and mani pedi—after which he fell asleep in one of his human’s arms.

Tomas settled in quickly and he is warming up to his foster humans. All he needs is time.

He is learning to play and get comfortable with being held.

Tomas still wanted to nurse on Conchita yet he is fully weaned. It is clear that Conchita is a very comforting and caring mom cat. She allowed Tomas to nurse whenever he wanted and she just fell asleep!!

The story of Conchita and Tomas is far from over. We still need to support the new fosters in trying to socialize Conchita. It will be a very sad day if the fosters must release her. She is so young and so precious.

As for Tomas, even if the fosters are not able to adopt him, he will certainly have a forever home just for him.

Please, during this pandemic, remember all those cat rescues who are dedicated to saving as many mom cats and kittens as possible during this trying kitten season, consider fostering or at least donating to your local TNR groups.





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