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Arson threat for Gloucestershire man for telling cat-owners action would be taken to stop their pets killing birds

By CitizenNews  |  Posted: August 11, 2014

Dr Clive Mowforth

Comments (19)

ARSON threats have allegedly been made against a Gloucestershire wildlife-lover after he warned residents action would be taken against their bird-killing cats.

The rising death toll in Dr Clive Mowforth’s Dursley garden has prompted him to leaflet-drop warning them to keep their blood-thirsty pets under control.

He has since incurred the wrath of many but claims up to 10 different cats have been visiting his garden, which has been converted into a haven for wildlife, at all times of the day and night.

Dr Mowforth, an Oxford University-educated research chemist, said: “This summer we have lost numerous blackbirds and woodpigeons to cats but the death toll has begun to escalate.

“I was watching the sparrow while eating my dinner; she was sat quietly enjoying the food in the evening sun when a cat leapt onto the shoulder-height table, grabbed the bird and ran off. This was the final straw.”

Dr Mowforth has spent more than a decade converting his garden into a bird’s paradise and despite being close to woodland, he said he sees few birds and those that do venture to his lawn, pond and bird table run the risk of being killed by cats.

The leaflets sent to households includes images taken from surveillance footage of the worst offenders which he said has led to numerous complaints to RSPCA and police.

Dr Mowforth said he has put the bird table away until he has deterrents in place and legislation is needed to ensure all cats are micro-chipped and wear an audible device to warn of their presence.

“The extreme elements within the pro-cat brigade have threatened arson,” Dr Mowforth added. I don’t see why I should have to pay to protect the birds in my garden from cat-owners who simply let their pets roam free.”

One neighbour, who wished to remain anonymous, was reported as being shocked when she noticed her cat was one of thos pictured.

She said: “Everyone in the street got one of these letters through the door. I was actually quite shocked when I saw it.

“I think the whole thing is a bit like Crime Watch for cats, it all seems very petty.

“I was actually really concerned when I read the bit about him taking ‘drastic action’ against the cats.

Councillor Colin Fryer (L, Dursley) said: “I am aware of the problems cats can cause wildlife and certain smells are supposed to repel them. But other than that, I am not sure what else you can do – cats are well known for killing birds.”

Gloucestershire Police said it did not have any arson threats recorded.

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  • glosres  |  August 12 2014, 8:37AM

    If you own a cat, put a bell on it. If no collar and bell, assume ferrel and round it up.

  • toadhall99  |  August 11 2014, 12:57PM

    I think this man is in desperate need of a psych evaluation

  • Areaman  |  August 11 2014, 10:01AM

    Isn't it funny how if a cat owned by a human kills a bird, which it is naturally programmed to do, certain people are up in arms at the suggestion that something be done. If a dog kills a fox, which it is naturally programmed to do, the same people are screaming for parliament to ban it and everyone involved to be prosecuted. Funny old world.

  • vodkaanimal  |  August 11 2014, 9:34AM

    I am one of the residents that live in the street that he put a leaflet through. My horror at what he might do to an innocent animal and to think that he is supposed to be a animal lover, obviously not to all animals. If he is silly enough to put a low bird table in his garden then he is asking for trouble. Cats are wild animals same as badgers, etc and we have domesticated them over the centuries but you will never take away their wild instincts. They are hardly likely to kill the whole population of birds!!! What is he going to do when a badger or fox comes into his garden and causes problems take drastic action against them as well. He is constantly complaining about something and it is getting a little tiresome now perhaps he needs to think a little bit more before he starts his next campaign which I am sure will be soon!!

  • cosmicc  |  August 11 2014, 9:14AM

    I well remember this idiots previous "campaigns" - bus companies,railway companies etc etc. Have to pay to take a cycle on the train - simple,buy a fold up bike.Find out that you can't take a dog on the bus - go out and buy a dog. The man is a buffoon.

  • SandraPee  |  August 11 2014, 8:57AM

    What annoys me more is when other people's cats use MY garden as their toilet facility !

  • Stuntgirl1  |  August 11 2014, 8:11AM

    Meant to say cat!

  • Stuntgirl1  |  August 11 2014, 8:11AM

    My credit used to bring in birds as presents so I put a bell on her collar. Problem solved.

  • spindles12  |  August 10 2014, 11:14PM

    That bird table is NOT shoulder height, well, perhaps for a midget. The seed feeder is far too low so it's no wonder a cat can easily catch a bird. I have a cat next door that occasionally catches birds but I make it as hard as I can for it by hanging feeders from the trees in the garden. I use hanging basket chains hooked onto large plant saucers as well as hanging bird tables and this does the trick. If Mr Mowforth hasn't got any suitable trees in his garden then he could just hang feeders from a taller bird feeding station which are much harder for a cat to jump up to. He says he has few birds coming into his garden but I wonder if that's something to do with the two bird silhouettes he has on his window, presumably to stop the birds flying into the glass but could make the birds think they are birds of prey. The video report on Sky News shows him putting lots of food on the bird table, some of which includes peanuts which should be put into a peanut feeder and not fed loose which Mr Mowforth, being a bird lover, should know and surely, if he says that he sees few birds in his garden then he's putting out far too much food which could go mouldy so he might end up killing the birds himself!

  • Cheeseford  |  August 10 2014, 6:53PM

    LordGagas - It's possible to regard Dr Mowforth as a nitwit without being a cat enthusiast, you know. I would suggest that for all of his Oxford education (why is it that people who went to Oxford mention it within seconds of meeting you?), Dr Mowforth seems a bit thick.