With eradication of feral and stray cats now a top conservation priority, renewed effort and urgency must be directed toward understanding their behavior, reproductive biology, space use, intraspecies interaction, dietary requirements, prey preferences, and sensitivity to different management strategies.
Free-Ranging Cats: Behavior, Ecology, Management describes a cohesive, modern picture of the lives of free-ranging domestic cats – whether owned, stray, or feral – based on current knowledge of their behavior, biology, and ecology. No such synthesis exists, and the scholarly information necessary to produce one is scattered through the world's journals and a few specialized books (nearly all edited volumes). The approach is mechanistic and functional, emphasizing sensory biology, reproductive physiology, nutrition, and space partitioning. The literature review is extensive and critical, questioning several widely accepted views of free-ranging cats, notably that they live within dominance hierarchies and are highly social. The research, when examined carefully, does not support either conclusion.
Free-ranging Cats: Behavior, Ecology, Management is valuable to ecologists, conservation scientists, animal behaviorists, wildlife nutritionists, wildlife biologists, research and wildlife veterinarians, clinical veterinarians, mammalogists, and park and game reserve planners and administrators.
Dr Stephen Spotte is a marine scientist and an adjunt scientist at Mote Marine Laboratory (Sarasota, Florida). He is an author or co-author of more than 80 scientific papers and has written 18 books.