Date of this Version
Skoda, J. (2023). Cats of UNL: An investigation into the human-feral cat relationships on a university campus in Nebraska. Undergraduate Honors Thesis. University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
At the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL), there exists a population of feral cats that is monitored and cared for by a group known as Husker Cats. As the cats wander the sidewalks and gardens of the university, they may appear non-threatening and pleasant to have around. However, a feral cat presence could have detrimental impacts on the surrounding ecosystem, property, and community. The first component of this project, a survey of individuals on UNL campus, ultimately seeks to understand what those in the UNL community know about the feral cats, how they feel about the feral cats, and how they believe the feral cats should be managed. The second component, an informative website, is designed to educate the public on feral cats, management options, and current control measures being taken at UNL. An examination of survey data from 70 participants suggests that most community members support the currently utilized trap-neuter-release method, but general knowledge about feral cats and their management was lacking. This provides clear areas to be targeted for public education efforts.