If you haven't checked out our Shop page lately, be sure to look at our three new color patterns for Spring 2014. One is a red-orange-yellow stripe, another is bright red dots, and yet another is a reprise of our popular Yellow Flowers pattern. Plus, after April 9th, find four of our best patterns all for sale on Amazon; just enter "birdsbesafe" in Amazon's search bar!
These patterns are confirmed to be effective at warning away birds and our customers are already enjoying having a few more fashion options for their cats. Look for two more new patterns before June, too. We know your cats are unique, so we want to give you plenty of choice--all fabrics that are effective and high-quality as well.
If you are a Birdsbesafe customer, you let your cat outdoors and yet, you are helping to protect a very significant proportion of songbirds from your cats' hunting ways. We at Birdsbesafe have seen, over 6 years, that our bright colors really do work to protect songbirds, and soon we are expecting further validation from a scientific study, to go along with all the customer "thank you notes" and reports that we receive on a weekly (or greater) basis. Thanks to our customers trying our product and then telling their friends when it really works, we have been able to help save more and more birds, literally around the world.
But should you be letting your cats outdoors to begin with? Increasingly, attention is given to the toll that housecats (and feral housecats) take on wildlife, including birds. A current New York Times opinion essay takes cat owners to task for letting cats outdoors at all. I'm sure feathers will be ruffled on all sides, as usual, when this topic is commented upon in subsequent days. Sometimes, Birdsbesafe LLC receives direct criticism for promoting letting cats outdoors at all. So, let me try to be very upfront: here is our bottom line:
It would be a great day if no housecats in the world were allowed outdoors to hunt. That would be Just Fine with me, the owner and originator of Birdsbesafe patent-pending wildlife-saving devices. I'm a bird-lover, a birder, a lifelong conservationist and former biologist/land use planner. The reason I work so hard to promote Birdsbesafe is to protect birds from cats that go outdoors and hunt.
We are in business because, pragmatically, while cats are still going outdoors and hunting, we can help save birds. More than half of all pet cats do go outdoors. You, the customers, have shown us that you trust and endorse and use our bright-colored collar covers--despite their garishness--to protect the birds that you love.
If you can keep your cats indoors: Please do.
If you want to walk your cat outdoors on a harness, to let it eat some grass and be in the sunshine, that works too. It's a great wildlife-conservation choice, and soon we plan to be selling harnesses on our website for just that reason.
Someone asked me recently if I was a "cat person" or a "bird person". "Yes," I said. "Both." It doesn't have to be either-or. You can have a conservation ethic, care about wild birds, and other animals, and have a cat. You have options. We offer one great partial solution to protect songbirds from outdoor-going cats. But on an individual basis, you have to make your own decisions about your own cat and whether it should go outdoors at all.
I believe that if you are letting your cat loose outdoors, it will hunt, and the least you can do is to try to limit its bird-hunting prowess so that it catches very very few birds by being decked out in our bright colors. In our next blog post, I'll discuss again why Birdsbesafe works so well and how it is making an increasing impact on wild bird protection around the world.