IMPORTANT COOK COUNTY HEARING!!  

On Tuesday, March 19, 2013, 11:30 a.m. at the County Building, 118 N. Clark, 5th floor, Chicago, IL, a hearing has been scheduled on the effectiveness of Cook County’s TNR (Trap Neuter Return) legislation that was passed a few years ago as a way that could possibly deal with the free-roaming outdoor cats.

Publicity about the harmful effects of the free-roaming outdoor cats, which the Trap Neuter Return (TNR) programs in Cook County and around the country subsidizes, recently appeared in several national news outlets about the huge mortality suffered by birds and other wildlife by free-roaming outdoor cats. This news was based on an article that appeared in a scientific journal and was authored by scientists from the Smithsonian and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 

To give you more background please click this link: http://www.abcbirds.org/abcprograms/policy/cats/materials/TNR_brochure.pdf.

The Bird Conservation Network, for which COS is a member, is asking that as many bird conservationists and other supporters of healthy native ecosystems be there as well. Speaking on our behalf will likely include representatives from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission and others. It would be especially helpful if you are a resident of Cook County and could attend but all are welcome. There will be no requirement to make a statement although you will be welcome to do so.

At the very least, if you are a resident of Cook County please contact your County Commissioner and tell him you are opposed to Trap Neuter Return as a way to reduce cat populations.

If you’re unsure of who your commissioner is, here are links to a map of the districts and another which identifies each district by commissioner:

 http://www.cookcountygov.com/portal/server.pt/community/government/226/leadership

TNR is bad for birds, cats and people! Please help COS and BCN oppose it.

In the following attachments and links you’ll find additional background on the issue:

The current ordinance: Cook County TNR Ordinance

The recent scientific paper from Smithsonian/USFWS : http://www.abcbirds.org/abcprograms/policy/cats/pdf/Loss_et_al_2013.pdf

An terrific video (9 minutes but well worth it): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fvN7FNUPas&list=UUVugkjDmqNSdzhWvvttJp3w&index=32

One of the several national news features on the Smithsonian/FWS report: http://www.npr.org/2013/01/29/170588511/killer-kitties-cats-kill-billions-every-year?sc=emaf