Feral Cat TNR Curbed in Jefferson, Oregon, as New Law Bans Feeding Any Animals Outside
By Denise A Justin (Photos attached)
Feeding any animal outside—domestic or wild--is now officially outlawed in Jefferson, Oregon. The ruling is part of an ordinance adopted by the City Council in late February and now fully in effect., City Recorder Sarah Cook told the Albany Democrat Herald.
The new law makes it illegal to feed--on purpose or incidentally--feral cats, wild rabbits, wild turkeys, deer, raccoons or any other wildlife.
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“The ordinance was developed to regulate the keeping of domestic animals and to prevent wildlife from living inside the city limits and possibly becoming a public nuisance,” the City Recorder said.
The ordinance states that “no person shall scatter or deposit any food or other attractants on public or private property with or without the intent of attracting and/or feeding wild animals.”
The ordinance also says “leaving food outside for any purpose, including for the purpose of feeding domestic animals and pets in a place where wild animals can access it, shall be a violation.”
Investigations into people feeding or harboring wildlife will be complaint-driven and violators could be fined between $100 and $500, the Herald reports.
Certain things will be considered before a citation is issued, said Cook. “We’ll look into noise, odors and property damage, and people will be warned first before being cited,” she explained.
TNR (trap, neuter, release) is addressed by allowing food to be placed in live traps only during the daytime to help capture feral cats for spaying or neutering, but would prohibit feeding outdoor colonies.
The law also allows also that bird seed may be put in receptacles that are “reasonably designed to prevent, and do prevent” access to food by wild animals.
The ordinance addresses other aspects of health/sanitation by establishing distance codes for livestock. “No person shall keep or maintain any livestock within a distance of 100 feet of any residence or dwelling occupied by one or more persons.”
Cook said the ordinance is the city’s first attempt to restrict wild animals within the city limits. The council agreed to revisit the ordinance after a year to see if it is effective.
There will be a few casualty under the new laws. the city will contact the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to arrange for permits to shoot the flock of about 50 wild turkeys that has decided to make Jefferson its home. Ten permits can be issued at a time, the Clerk said.
A Marion County deputy will shoot the birds. The meat must be donated to an organization such as a food bank.
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Source: (Democrat Herald)