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CAT SURVIVAL TRUST (FOR ENDANGERED SPECIES)
The Cat Survival Trust is based on a twelve acre site in Hertfordshire, England, where a small band of unpaid staff manage its affairs in an overcrowded office above a shop (which sells mainly animal foodstuffs and accessories) and also care for the cats, maintain the site and buildings and do most of the construction work.
A Brief History
The Cat Survival Trust has secured and purchased a 10,000 acre rain forest in the Province of Misiones in northeast Argentina which has now successfully acquired protected status in the form of a designated Provincial Park. Here, not only are the native wild cat species protected but more importantly, so is the entire ecosystem. The Cat Survival Trust believes that this is the real way forward as not only is this method more cost-effective it also involves the conservation of all the flora and fauna that make up the intricate ecosystem in which the cats so critically depend on.
Our first reserve was bought in pursuit of this policy where there is Ocelot, Margay, Oncilla, Jaguarundi and Puma (about 40 individuals) living in an area of virgin forest. Funds are currently being sought to enable the reserve to expand so that the Jaguar, which vanished from the area about 80 years ago, can be reintroduced. The reserve was, until recently, managed by a charity set up for the purpose in Argentina, the Fundación Selva Misionera, or Mission Rainforest Foundation. It has now been adopted by the government of Misiones as a Provincial Park and is a partnership between the charity and the government.
The Cat Survival Trust is now planning to purchase and acquire more natural habitat to create further protected areas. If our plans are successful, these new reserves will be located in seven different countries and will contribute substantially to the number of wild cat species protected in habitat reserves bought by the Trust.
Another role of the Cat Survival Trust is the on-site housing of "unwanted" and surplus wild cats from zoos and other collections. Currently the Trust houses around 25 wild cats at its headquarters in Hertfordshire, England, ranging from the diminutive Leopard Cat and Asian Wild Cat to the Serval, Caracal Asian Golden Cat and its Amur Leopards, Pumas, Jaguar and of course......Snow Leopards. As many of the wild cats here are rescued animals the Trust desperately needs to build further enclosures for additional arrivals and for new general wild cat exhibits.
The Cat Survival Trust is not open freely to the general public but instead is run on a membership basis, where such members and school/educational groups can visit by appointment to be shown around the wild cats by a member of staff.
“Charities are all the same… always asking for money!”
Yes! We know the feeling!
But The Cat Survival Trust really is different. Read on…
We need money for:
- Purchase of land for new protected areas
- Housing for rescued wild cats from zoos and other collections
- Care and feeding of rescued cats
- Our work in conservation education.
We promise NOT to waste your money on:
- Prestige offices in top-class locations (it’s upstairs in an old farm building)
- Salaries of overpaid executives and staff (nobody gets paid)
- Expensive advertising campaigns (what we have are sponsored or donated)
- The production of reports that are out-of-date before they are published
- Holding conferences which achieve nothing
Purchase of land for new protected areas
In the early 1990s The Cat Survival Trust bought its first new reserve in Misiones, Argentina. That reserve has now been adopted by the Misiones government as a Provincial Park, its initial population of around forty cats of five species has increased by almost a third and a very happy relationship has been established with the local people and their government. The Trust now has plans for about 300,000 acres of new reserves, spread through seven countries. Land prices vary, but the cost of setting up these new reserves will total millions of pounds. By protecting the land where cats live we also protect the millions of other life-forms living there.
Housing for rescued cats
Cats, regardless of species, can live for fifteen to twenty years, sometimes longer. Unfortunately as they get older they are less attractive as zoo exhibits and they are then often disposed of - zoos are cash-starved too. Some of these cats come to spend the rest of their lives at the Trust’s headquarters in Hertfordshire, England, where they are given the best treatment our resources will allow. At present all our cat houses are full, some of the cats would benefit from more space and we urgently need to build more housing especially for our bigger cats such as lynxes and snow leopards. The cost of this work will run into tens of thousands of pounds, but even hundreds would allow us to make progress. Phase 1 of the snow leopard complex nearing completion Care and feeding of rescued cats Much of our food bill is sponsored by an animal food and accessories business which shares our site, but with so many cats waiting to be rescued the total will soon outstrip what can be provided from that source. Veterinary fees have so far been low, mainly because of good husbandry and the fact that most of the ailments from which the cats suffer are treated homoeopathically by our Director, who is a homoeopathic doctor. With more cats arriving, often from uncertain backgrounds, this situation may soon change.
Our work in conservation education
Talks are given to schools and other interested groups in which we try to increase their awareness of the needs, not just of wild cats but of the whole environment in which both they and we live. Many of these people, especially those in deprived areas, cannot afford to pay fees or expenses. Others talk - we get on with the job!
How to give Cash
Donations may be handed in at our headquarters at The Cat Survival Trust, The Centre, Codicote Road, Welwyn, Herts. AL6 9TU, England, Tel: +44 (0)1438 716873); cheques should be made payable to The Cat Survival Trust. Telephone or postal payments may be made using the following credit/debit cards: Visa, Access, Mastercard, American Express, Optima, Connect, Switch, Electron, JCB. Corporate donors and those giving large amounts are asked to contact us by one of the ways shown on the contact page.
For more information on how to Donate, Volunteer, Become a Member, Adopt a Cat, or see the cats in our care, please visit our website:http://www.catsurvivaltrust.org/
Photo by Debbie, White Witch