The authorities in the German city of Waldorf, Baden-Württemberg state, have decided to ban domestic cats from outside the city. If tutors break the law, they may have to pay a fine equal to BRL 2,860.
Authorities have ruled that cats living in the Rhine-Neckar district in north-west Waldorf must be denied freedom by the end of August. The measure aims to save one species of bird, the lark, from extinction. This bird chooses the time between May and August to build its nest.
Local politicians and environmentalists suggest that house cats are on the predator list of larks and believe that keeping them indoors can help the species ensure its survival. However, the move has upset a local animal protection association, which plans to take legal action against the decree.
This law applies to anyone who has an outdoor cat in the southern part of Waldorf. If the cat escapes, the owner will be forced to catch it.
If the tutor does not respect the decision, he may have to pay a fine. According to local news website Rhein-Nekar-Zeitung, if a cat kills a lark living in Waldorf, the owner could be fined up to R$261,000.
The habitat of this species has been specifically recorded in the areas of Baden-Württemberg, such as the area between the districts of Karlsruhe and Mannheim. In addition to Waldorf, the area around Waghausel and Ketsch is also considered a habitat for larks.
This species prefers to nest on the ground at construction sites near residential areas, where they are easy prey for smaller predators such as cats.
In addition, officials claim that their chicks are unable to fly for the first few weeks. At the first sign of danger, they lie on the ground rather than run away – which makes them an easy target for cats.