Pet owners are blissfully unaware that their social media darlings may massacre some 30 million in local prey annually.
Think your little Felix is no troublemaker because it seems he never leaves your property? Think again.
While photos of your pet cat live large on social media, and rake in "loves and wows", the real deal's likeness has been filmed on the edges of Table Mountain National Park, helping wreck indigenous wildlife, one animal at a time.
A single Cape Town house cat destroys about 90 animals a year -- yet, less than 20% of these kills are ever returned home, a group of South African scientists has revealed.
Most casualties butchered by this army of feline felons are native animals, already under pressure from tanking ecotourism revenues and environmental factors. Fires fanning through the park each summer, like the March 2020 blaze on Lion's Head, is just one example of such a pressure. It burnt out several nearby cars and transformed 60 hectares of wild habitat into a shade of midnight dystopia.
Kitties padding around the urban edges of the park are probably claiming at least 200,000 prey from the reserve each year, the study estimates -- this from...