An Ashfield man says he thinks he knows why so many cats have gone missing from the Hucknall and Annesley area – hungry buzzards preying for food.
Kevin Allsop, of Hucknall, has lived near the town’s tram stop for more than four decades and believes owners of missing cats in the area are “looking in the wrong place” – claiming buzzards are pouncing on vulnerable pets.
Mr Allsop reached out to one of our reporters after a number of cat owners expressed their dismay at the high number of missing cats across the area, and claims he has the answer.
He says he regularly sees the birds of prey on “bombing runs” looking for food, and has urged the affected cat owners to turn their attention “skywards”.
Mr Allsop, a plumber by trade, says his border terrier dog was targeted by a buzzard a few years ago and he’s been wary of the predators ever since.
And he believes the increase in buzzard sites, as well as owls at night, is not “coincidental” with the rise in missing cats.
“I think the owners of the missing cats are looking in the wrong place. They should look skywards”, he said.
“I regularly see buzzards going on ‘bombing runs’ near the Bestwood Nature Reserve and behind the houses opposite, and they obviously search further afield looking for prey.
“We had a border terrier in the garden a couple of years go and a buzzard was lining up on a run when my wife spotted it and snatched the dog. A buzzard will take cats as well as rabbits.
“We also get a number of owls flying around at night. Some of them are big enough to kill a cat even though they are roughly the same size. We’ve noticed cats going missing from our road and also the rabbits on the nature reserve are a rare site.
“I don’t think the rise in the number of buzzards and owls in the area and the decrease in the number of rabbits and cats is coincidental.
“My advice to cat owners is to keep your cats in, both during the day and at night, if you don’t want them eaten.”