Sunday, 23 March 2014

it's a difference of peeps

Here in Nova Scotia, spring is just around the corner. Actually, I think it might have retreated behind a wall or two 'cause even though yesterday mornin' was quite spring-like, by late afternoon, it was snowin'... again.  MOUSES!

But if we are to assume that the planet will continue to turn on its axis while orbiting the sun, we must also assume that eventually, spring will make an appearance.  And with the arrival of spring, will come soft breezes, gentle rains, pretty flowers and singing birds.  Yes my friends, in due time, all shall appear.

Of course, the other thing that will crop up are the peeps who keep tellin' everyone that cats, when allowed outdoors, kill all the birds.  In fact, rumour has it that these peeps have begun tellin' their tall tales, already.  MOUSES!

We all know how these things start.  Someone with a few letters behind their name or somebody associated with a big-time organisation starts spoutin' off about the cats killin' all the birds and the next thing you know, everyone else is repeatin' what they're sayin'.  They repeat it over and over and over again until they, and everybody else, start believin' it as fact.

But the truth is, just saying somethin' repeatedly can't make somethin' fact.  That somethin' has to actually be factual in the first place in order for it to be fact and that, my friends, is a fact.

Remember all those peeps who kept claiming that the world was flat?  For centuries, everybody said, "the world is flat."  They said it over and over and over again until everyone believed it to be so. But did their sayin' it, make it so?  Ummm...  NO.

Oh sure, there may very well be peeps out there who still believe in the flatness of the Earth.  There are probably peeps out there lookin' for a Flat Earth Society to join at this very moment.  And there are probably peeps still tellin' other peeps that yes, the world is, indeed, flat.  But the fact remains, the Earth is not flat.  No, my friends, the Earth is round.  Now that's a fact.

So just what does all this have to do with cats and birds? I'm gettin' to that.

For starters, this business about the Earth bein' flat should teach us all that we can't believe everything we hear.  There might be a lot of hype about somethin' and there might be a lot of peeps sayin' that that somethin' is true but that doesn't make it fact.  You shouldn't just believe someone 'cause they say they know what they're talkin' about.  You need to actually listen to what they're sayin' and ask yourself, does what they're sayin' make sense?

You need to use your own senses.  You need to use your own powers of observation.  You need to use your own mind.  Don't believe other peeps 'cause everyone else is believein' them.  They might be all wrong.  Just ask the peeps who used to believe that the Earth was flat.

What if Columbus had believed all this flat Earth stuff?  Where would we be then?  Well, for starters, there would be no such thing as Thanksgiving.

Anywho...  back to the birds and the cats.

It has been said, by some, that outdoor kitties are killin' all the birds.  Songbirds, specifically.  I don't think they're talkin' about turkeys and chickens 'cause even they have to admit that it's peeps who do most of the killin' of those birds.  I wonder where pigeons fit in?  Hmmm...

Peeps with letters and whatnot followin' their names have been claiming that cats like me have been systematically decimating the songbird population.  Well I have news for them.  I, Nerissa the Cat, have evidence DISPROVIN' those reports!  I do.  I really, really do.

I live with nine other cats.  Yes, there are ten of us cats livin' at my house and all ten of us are allowed outside in the garden.  We're allowed to go anywhere we like in the garden 'cause...  you know...  it's OUR garden.  During the spring and summer and fall, we all spend a lot of time outside in the garden.  We play out there and nap and have meetings and whatnot.  On particularly nice days, sometimes we only come inside to eat and use the litter box.  On particularly nice days, we can be outside almost all day long.

So here we have a garden and that garden is filled with cats. Do you know what else fills that garden?  BIRDS!  And not just any ol' kind of birds.  SONGBIRDS! Why, we have songbirds up to our ears.  There are all sorts of 'em.  Blue jays, chickadees, waxwings, thrushes, finches...  you name 'em, we've got 'em.  We even have hummers!  There are birds upon birds upon birds!!!

Sometimes, when Peep #1 is outside playin' in the garden part of the garden, she'll stop what she's doin' and just listen.  My peep loves the songs those birds sing.  She simply loves hearin' them sing.  And she's not the only one to have heard birds singing in my garden, either.  Others have commented on it.  Yes, my friends, others have noticed that even though we a house full of cats spendin' time in the garden, the garden is still filled with birds.

If there was any truth - at all - about cats who are allowed outside killing all the birds, how could my garden exist?  Why, it couldn't.  If we cats were killing all the birds, all the birds would be dead.  And if all the birds were dead, they wouldn't be able to sing.  See?  This little theory of those peeps is startin' to unravel like a half-knit sweater carelessly left on the couch next to a curious cat but I digress.  That's an entirely different story.

My point is, CLEARLY, we cats aren't killing all the birds.  But are we killin' some of them, you ask. Would there be even more birds if we weren't allowed outside?  NO.

Peep #1 has told me that when she has been in other peeps' gardens, she has not heard as many birds.  She has told me that she hears far more birds singing in my garden than in many, many others.  Even in gardens where there are birdbaths and feeders and whatnot.  She has also said that she notices a difference when she walks down to get the mail.  There are not nearly as many birds singing at the other end of the subdivision as there are singing in our, very own garden.  You know, the garden with all the cats.

How can this be?  How can there be more songbirds in a garden with ten cats than in other gardens with fewer or, in most cases, no cats?  It doesn't make sense.  At least, it doesn't make sense according to those stupid theories about the cats killin' all the birds.

Personally, I believe it's all in the peeps.  Yes, my friends, it's a difference of peeps.

You see, when my Peep #1 gardens, she does so with birds in mind.  Apparently, most people don't do that.

My peep grows plants that she knows will provide food and shelter for songbirds.  Mankind continues, on a daily basis, to destroy the habitats of songbirds, leaving them with nowhere to nest and no food to eat.  And the little food that is left, they poison with pesticides and herbicides.  If those poisons don't kill the birds directly, they do so, indirectly.  Many songbirds need insects to eat.  When peeps kill all the insects with poisons, the insect-eating songbirds end up starving to death.

And what about the bees?  Something is killing the bees and you can bet your last loonie there's no way to blame cats for that one although, I am sure there are some peeps out there who are willin' to try.  But no, it is far more likely that the bees are dyin' because of somethin' peeps have done.  Not my peeps.  Other peeps.  If you're gonna blame peeps or cats on this one, you've gotta go with the peeps.

What about the birds who eat berries?  Those berries are pollinated by bees.  If the bees die, they can't pollinate the flowers that produce the berries and the songbirds will, again, all starve to death. Many seed-bearing plants are pollinated by bees, too.  Another food source gone as well. MOUSES!

We have a garden filled with birds 'cause my peep grows things like multiflora roses and crab apples and Russian olives, all of which provide berries for birds to eat throughout the winter.  We have a garden filled with birds 'cause my peep grows flowers that produce lots of seeds that provide food for birds in the summer and fall.  We have a garden filled with birds 'cause my peep grows nectar-rich plants like honeysuckle and fuchsias for the hummers.  We have a garden filled with birds 'cause my peep grows pollen-rich plants and trees to feed the bees who then pollinate the plants that will eventually feed the birds.  We have a garden filled with birds 'cause my peep only gardens organically.  She never uses any kind of chemical that could harm the birds or the bees and the birds, in turn, take care of any insects that might bother the plants.  We have a garden filled with birds 'cause my peep did not cut down all the tall trees so there are places for the birds to nest and find shelter.  We have a garden filled with birds 'cause my peep has provided them with a haven, safe from mankind.  Safe from the peeps out there who are REALLY doin' all the killin'.

So you see?  It really is a difference of peeps.  Nothin' to do with cats, at all.  It can't be the cats. When you think about it, it doesn't make sense that it's the cats.  If the stories were true, we cats would have killed all those birds in nothin' flat.  We're all quite skilled with wand toys and nip mice, you know.  Our garden simply cannot exist, according to all those stupid theories about cats killing all the birds.  It just couldn't.  AND YET IT DOES.

I will admit, there have been some fatalities.  In a good year, we catch one or two birds.  Very occasionally, three.  That's three birds, tops, in a whole year for all ten of us.  Not three each.  Three in total.  That means, in a good year, I'm responsible for the death of just under one-third of a bird. Hmmm...  I'm thinkin' there are a lot of peeps out there responsible for killing a lot more songbirds than that.  Of course, that's just my theory.  But the stuff about my garden bein' filled with birds and cats?  THAT'S A FACT. MOUSES!

42 comments:

  1. How lovely to see some Spring! Here in Montreal, Quebec we had a blizzard yesterday. Your photos are so nice.

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  2. Well, there are seven of us here that have never, ever caught a bird so it must be the peeps fur sure!

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  3. People are always looking to blame dogs and cats for all kinds of silly stuff. Some of it is just nature, they don't get that one. We have lost more birds to flying into our windows in a bad year then all 10 of you get. We still have knee deep snow here just north of Ottawa, hope spring comes someday!

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  4. You are so right on Nissy. I'm allowed out on a leash and sometimes a birdie lands just a couple of feet away from where I'm sitting - I have never once caught one. Number 1, they are pretty fast when they decide to fly away and if I just make one muscle move in the birdie's direction, he/she flies away. So i wish people who don't know what they are talking about would stop blaming us kitties for killing the birdies.

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  5. That is such a good post Nissy and Oh so true. We have at least 10 cats that live outside and they do not catch more than one or two birds a year. They have learned to watch out for the birds and take off if one starts coming towards them. Hope you are having a great week end.

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  6. Peeps cause habitat destruction and use chemicals...they're just looking for someone to blame.
    The REAL Maple Syrup Mob xxxx
    PS Mummy Janey was a birdy rehabber...d'ya know what? More birdies came in injured because of dogs or peeps..so there,peeps with letters after your name!!!

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  7. There are people, and there are cat haters. Spring brings the creepy crawlies of all kinds out of the woodwork......,

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  8. Our barn cats do mostly take the mouses, and that's ok mom say.

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  9. The hawks in Gram and Gramps yard kill FAR MORE bird than all the kitties that live around there. Gram says that she mostly sees the kitties with mice and moles very rarely a bird.

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  10. While reading your text my human was smiling. She said that your Peep is a really nice person.
    She likes bees, birds and … cats, and the nature and animals in general (she is vegetarian (since 1988..) and eats mostly organic food).
    Loustiquette takes one or two birds a year. She mostly catches mouses or rats. Same for me.
    Nat à Chat thinks that because of me, the lizards will disappear from the whole area !
    Plein de ronrons.
    Hisia

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    1. My peeps are veggies, too! Have been, for years. purrs

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  11. Here in Canada, I cant say the same! We have had about 3 snowfalls here, but it is warming up this week!
    Have a pawsome day!
    ❀Siamese Smothers and Tuxie Tickles❀Happiness is Siamese!

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  12. Good post and very true.
    Humans do not want to take responsibility for the damage THEY do :/
    They cut down trees and put up houses. Where do the birds live?
    Then they complain when coyotes show up in the yard (that used to be theirs) !
    Yup, some humans are not too smart .
    Purrs Georgia and Julie,
    Treasure, JJ
    and Angels Tiger and Tillie

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  13. totally agree with you Nerissa! my kitties are indoor only, We don't have a yard, but they enjoy watching the birds out my windows. Hoomins are definitely more to blame here. Environmentally, they are taking away a lot of the birds' homes. Besides, the circle of life is such that these types of things are quite normal. It keeps all of the anipal population healthy!! <3

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  14. Eggcellent post Nerissa me agreez wif ya!!! Diz idea dat kittehz kill all de birdz iz 'fer da birdz' as me Mum sayz!!
    We haz lotz of birdz here top n no one iz getting deaded by me!
    In fact last November a Peregrine Falcon took one of me Mourning Dovez fer lunch :(
    3 weekz ago a H-U-G-E Red Tailed hawk came on to da patio chair n looked in at me n Mum. A few minuttz later we saw da Hawk flyin a way wif sumfin in his tallonz...Mum called da nayburr n shure enuff da hawk tooked one of me Dove furendz....we nose dat iz dere nature to eatz meet butt we waz sad to see another birdie go...dere are a few kittehz who chase birdz; dere are feral kittehz who eatz birdiez butt dey haz to eat sumfin rite?? Me eatz chicken n turkey frum a can; what da KAT iz da difference??? We kittehz iz gettin a 'bum rap' n it iz so unfair!
    Phankz fer yer grrrreat bloggie! AS fer da Peepz wif sum letterz beehind dere name doez letterz shuud be: D-U-M-M!!!
    Yer furend, Nylablue.....

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  15. So good to see this. There was yet another piece in the NY Times today espousing the idea that one day people who let their cats go outdoors will be treated like smokers in restaurants. I've lived in the same house for 12 years and we have as many moles caught as ever. What I have noticed is less butterflies and that has nothing to do with cats.

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  16. Thanks, Nerissa, for explaining this so clearly and so thoroughly!

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  17. Great post Nis and so true. I agree with you big time!
    My catsmdont go outside due to living very near a highway, but there are a few regular Ferrell's in our yard quite often yet there are also a million birdies all of the time as well.
    People try to make up their own facts all the time! Its silly if you ask me!!!
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

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  18. You tell them, Nissy! This is like the bad rumor that won't go away, and peeps don't think critically about it, so they just take it at face value. Most frustrating.

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  19. I agree. My ma is like yours and she plants for the wildlife. My kitty doesn't go out because she is too young but we have other peoples cats that come in our yard and they never try to kill birds, they want the fish in the pond which they never get. Have you ever seen a mad mockingbird? A mama mocking bird that maybe a kitty got one of her babies or its getting too close to the nest? That mama bird will tear that cat up! I have seen it with my own eyes. If humans would stop knocking down all the trees to build houses with no trees in the yards then the birds could visit them too but its humans who are killing the birds off with their insecticides, no trees, and all their chemicals they use to keep grass green. I am thankful my ma doesn't use any of that.

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  20. Mommy agrees with you, Nissy. Daddy has put in plants and shrubs specifically to attract birds and insects (the "good" kinds) and we have one of the liveliest yards in the 'hood. We get a bird or two occasionally when they fly onto the Catio, but that is just LIFE. Or death, as the case may be. Around here what's really in danger are the lizards! The Baby is a prolific huntress.

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  21. So, so true, Nissy! You have done a fantastic job of explaining this issue, and for that, we are so thankful!

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  22. There's eight of us here. Only three of us have full outdoor privileges, but birdies also get on our catio all the time and on the upper deck where we all go. Mom might find one or two killed birdies per year. And we have seen the big bad birdies, like Nylablue mentioned, eat the little birdies. We all know us kitty cats are innocent and peeps are always trying to frame us. But, we are standing paw to paw with you to say it isn't so. More birdies die from the pollution the humans created. XOXO, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

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  23. MOUSES!! Nissy, you and Peep #1 have the essence..of the issue 'bout cats and birds...it is always, always...the peep's accountability...cats like the rodent population far better than the birdies...IMFO...and as an indoor only cat...I like 'watching' the birdies just fine...hope that tracks with your message...paw pats, Savvy

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  24. Absolutely! I said something similar in one of my blogs and actually received hate mail from one of those bods with letters after their name. I said "scientific obs3rvation" and he said, "personal experience"! Those fellas get so wound upmin their own emotions that it becomes a crusade rather tha looking at the evidence. Anyhow, the only song worth singing here in Ireland at the moment is, "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head!"

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    1. Hate mail? MOUSES! Well, bring it on Mr. Bod with the letters after your name. I dare him to try that with me. I, Nerissa the Cat, will put him in his place for sure and if he still insists upon causin' trouble, I will package up some of my Auntie Primrose's extra stinky you-know-what and teleport on over there to deliver it, personally. purrs

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  25. The biggest problem is too many people just do not like cats and now the cats are becoming more and more popular as family pets/kids. I don't think it is jealousy, but rather fear of cats. That can bring out the worst sort of defense from scaredy cat humans.
    This is a wonderful article! It should be saved and posted as a comment after every article that shows up accusing cats of depleting the bird population.

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Jobi. I would love for my post to be mentioned in comments after all those stupid articles that are filled with nothin' but lies about us cats. purrs

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  26. Two mice delivered to the door this morning and not in one piece :-( Yes spring is certainly here in the UK

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    1. Well, mice... that's a whole different story. MOUSES!

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  27. That's right, Nerissa, no blaming cats for this one. Cats can be outside and enjoy the garden and have nothing to do with the songbirds!

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  28. I wish your garden wasn't so far away - it sounds like a lovely place!!

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  29. The four of us stay inside for our own protection - fox and coyote have been spotted in our neighbourhood. We watch birds - the big pheasant and the little chickadees, because we put food out for them. We hope it helps them survive the winter and it sure has been a long one this year!

    Mindy
    Moe
    Cookie
    Mike

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  30. Me, I am responsible for the deaths of 0 birds--I mean, I'd LIKE to get me a bird, but unless my Human buys me a parakeet or something, it ain't gonna happen, MOL!

    Hey, THANKS for that cool awardie! The Human was being SOOOOOO irresponsible for MONTHS there--but she says she'll try to be better now. We'll see, won't we?

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  31. Hello Nerissa! We are glad to have fallen onto your blog! You make great points in this post. Some humans huh? Looking for an easy explanation to blame someone else, instead of considering other possible causes... Or that humans might actually be involved in songbird depopulation. Ugh...some humans. Btw, your garden sounds amazing.

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  32. Well said indeed Nerissa..remember the whole cats are witches familiars and the ensuing killing by "those in the know' of all the cats welcome the beubonic plague..this is what happens when cat lies get out...we have here 40 different species of birds..they thrive because the trees and gardens are here for them..yes our girls go outside they are in before sunset and not let out until morning birdies have done their thing..we have abundant wildlife...native bees,birds,skinks,blue tongues snakes eww (especially after Forrests bite an emergency sat) scorpions,kangaroos,possums,sugar gliders,ducks,dragon flies,rabbits,tortoises,echidnas,i could go on...the girls get mice and rats but so do the snakes..sometimes they get a bird but as Nylablue said so do the owls and hawks and wedge tail eagles here..they also get rabbits as do the foxes here..we keep them in at night for the safety of the nocturnal creatures and also their safety..reality is birds can be killed by humans removing trees,by disease by other creatures etc...I am sick of cats getting the bad rap when people are the biggest killers in the world..my soapbox rant over :) hugs Fozziemum xx

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  33. My cat was afraid of mice, guinea pigs etc. He ran away from them.

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  34. This is great! I agree, always have tried to speak to the screams and shrieks against us but to no avail.

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  35. Hi Nissy. Yep, I saw the award. Thank you. Will blog about it this week. Miss ya!

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  36. My cats are allowed in the yard too and never have had the death of a bird... Not sure what all the hype is either. As for this "spring" I keep hearing about, I'm starting to wonder if it's ever going to arrive here in Canada! ;)

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  37. What a great story Nerissa! I think it's great how well trained you have made your Peep#1. That's very good. Our peep also has lots of birds in the garden. I share my house with 6 other cats...my peep says we're the Lucky Seven. Anypaws...just wanted to say keep up the good work! Cheers from Pixie, Messina, Piccola, Enzo, Boots, Scarlett, and Misty.

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