15 June 2016

Environment: How tiny Malta copes with several hundred thousand stray cats - new ebook 'Islands of Cats'

Islands of Cats ebook pre-release available on Lulu.com

Many of us appreciate a cat as a pet, the moggy that wakes us in the morning with a loving purr or lounges in our favourite arm chair when we come home. In several countries around the globe, stray cats have become a true problem. This species is very productive when it comes to procreating, and though this is their nature, in the absence of natural predators, cats that end up in the streets will instinctively mate and after a while we have a population explosion, if not a pest. The US currently cope with 50 million stray and feral cats, Australia is confronted with 20 million jeopardising several endangered species, around Berlin 100'000 strays roam the area, the UK faces problems, Switzerland is discussing a tax on un-neutered/un-spayed cats, the shelters are packed, to name just a few. Many stray cats end up in shelters just to be euthanised ...

In 2012 we moved to Malta and soon noticed the many stray and feral cats in the streets. Moving to a place with a "cat colony" across the street in 2015, the topic finally caught our attention. Why are these home-less felines so good looking, well-fed and healthy? How many are there? Who are these more than 1,000 individuals going around to feeding spots on our Islands to provide food, water, veterinary aid and neutering 7/365? How does tiny, sea-locked Malta cope with the issue? To answer all this and much more, we went around Malta and Gozo to interview dozens of "Stray Cat Carers" as well as shelters dedicated to cats. After six months we are now able to present our research in an entertaining and, at the same time, educational photo-story book with the mission to take this environmental topic closer to the public and to clear some misunderstandings.

"Islands of Cats" contains 22 representative carer portraits, interviews, cat facts and descriptions of places of interest on 121 pages with 222 high-resolution photographs. Of the Euro 7.99 (excl. VAT) sales price we will return 1 Euro to the stray cat carer community, to help with food and vet vouchers to cover otherwise and primarily privately paid costs for the carers' many furry protégés. This electronic pre-release comes as PDF in English, German, or Maltese. A print version is planned. Please refer to our most recent newsletter for all details, a preview, and more links. And please share share share. Grazzi ħafna !!