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Diet of feral cats in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park

January 1, 2007

We documented the diet of feral cats by analysing the contents of 42 digestive tracts from Kilauea and Mauna Loa in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. Small mammals, invertebrates, and birds were the most common prey types consumed by feral cats. Birds occurred in 27.8-29.2% of digestive tracts. The total number of bird, small mammal, and invertebrate prey differed between Kilauea and Mauna Loa. On Mauna Loa, significantly more (89%) feral cats consumed small mammals, primarily rodents, than on Kilauea Volcano (50%). Mice (Mus musculus) were the major component of the feral cat diet on Mauna Loa, whereas Orthoptera were the major component of the diet on Kilauea. We recovered a mandible set, feathers, and bones of an endangered Hawaiian Petrel (Pterodroma sandwichensis) from a digestive tract from Mauna Loa. This specimen represents the first well-documented endangered seabird to be recovered from the digestive tract of a feral cat in Hawai'i and suggests that feral cats prey on this species.

Publication Year 2007
Title Diet of feral cats in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park
DOI 10.1071/PC070244
Authors S.C. Hess, H. Hansen, D. Nelson, R. Swift, P.C. Banko
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Pacific Conservation Biology
Index ID 70031659
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Pacific Islands Ecosys Research Center