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Open AccessReview

The Significance of Social Perceptions in Implementing Successful Feral Cat Management Strategies: A Global Review

1
School of Biological Sciences, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA 5005, Australia
2
FAUNA Research Alliance Inc., P.O. Box 98, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia
3
School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, University of Adelaide, Roseworthy, SA 5371, Australia
4
Invasive Species Unit, Biosecurity South Australia, GPO Box 397, Adelaide, SA 5001, Australia
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School of Social Sciences, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA 5005, Australia
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Animals 2019, 9(9), 617; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9090617
Received: 2 July 2019 / Revised: 10 August 2019 / Accepted: 22 August 2019 / Published: 28 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Public Policy, Politics and Law)
Feral cats pose a threat to many populations of small- to medium-sized animal species around the world, primarily through predation and disease. For this reason, feral cat management has become a priority in parts of the world where at-risk species are facing high threats of extinction. To implement a successful feral cat management program, there are specific technical and social requirements that need to be met. Most of the recent research conducted around feral cat management has examined the technical aspects, but there is considerably less research around the social aspects that may influence the success of feral cat management in inhabited areas. This review aims to identify and discuss feral cat management from a social perspective, and to highlight potential areas for future research that may aid in building successful campaigns in the future.
This review examines the social aspects that influence feral cat management. In particular, it examines definitions and perceptions of feral cats as a species in different countries and across cultures. Using case studies from around the world, we investigate the factors that can influence public perceptions and social acceptance of feral cats and management methods. The review then highlights the importance of social factors in management and suggests the best approach to use in the future to ease the process of gaining a social license for management campaigns. Implications of the influence of education and awareness on public perception and acceptance are further explained, and are suggested to be an essential tool in successfully engaging the community about management in the future. View Full-Text
Keywords: Felis catus; invasive species management; public relations; science communication; community engagement; social science Felis catus; invasive species management; public relations; science communication; community engagement; social science
MDPI and ACS Style

Deak, B.P.; Ostendorf, B.; Taggart, D.A.; Peacock, D.E.; Bardsley, D.K. The Significance of Social Perceptions in Implementing Successful Feral Cat Management Strategies: A Global Review. Animals 2019, 9, 617. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9090617

AMA Style

Deak BP, Ostendorf B, Taggart DA, Peacock DE, Bardsley DK. The Significance of Social Perceptions in Implementing Successful Feral Cat Management Strategies: A Global Review. Animals. 2019; 9(9):617. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9090617

Chicago/Turabian Style

Deak, Brooke P.; Ostendorf, Bertram; Taggart, David A.; Peacock, David E.; Bardsley, Douglas K. 2019. "The Significance of Social Perceptions in Implementing Successful Feral Cat Management Strategies: A Global Review" Animals 9, no. 9: 617. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9090617

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