Feral cats in Hawaii spell disaster for the endangered monk seal.

Did you see this on Newser today? The feral cat population has exploded in Hawaii, where they are not native and face no natural predators—and this could spell disaster for the endangered monk seal. That’s because cat poop often contains a parasite called Toxoplasmosa gondii, and when sewage and polluted runoff carry the infected feces to the ocean, it can prove lethal, reports Scientific American. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration estimates that eight Hawaiian monk seals have succumbed to the disease since 2001, which is a sizable number given that 1,100 are estimated to be alive today in the wild. The same bacteria have also killed California sea otters and helped send the Hawaiian crow into extinction, reports the Christian Science Monitor. For feral cats a trap-neuter-return project is going on.



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