That mouse carcass Kitty presents you with is just the tip of a very bloody iceberg. When researchers attached kittycams to house cats, they found a secret world of slaughter.
While only 30% of roaming house cats kill prey — two animals a week on average — they are still slaying more wildlife than previously believed, according to research from the University of Georgia.
Wildlife advocates say it is a frightening level of feline foul play. Based on a U.S. house-cat population of 74 million, "cat predation is one of the reasons why one in three American birds species are in decline," says George Fenwick, president of American Bird Conservancy.
"The previous estimates were probably too conservative because they didn't include the animals that cats ate or left behind," University of Georgia researcher Kerrie Anne Loyd says.
The cats brought home just under a quarter of what they killed, ate 30% and left 49% to rot where they died.
Read the expanded version of this report at the USA Today Web site.