The move should strengthen measures to protect vulnerable and threatened native wildlife which are at risk of predation by feral cats which have played a major role in the extinction of at least 27 native animal species.
The declaration will enable natural resource management and recognised biosecurity groups to control feral cats and complement cat control efforts by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions within State reserves and areas of high conservation value.
Feral cat management programs implemented by Recognised Biosecurity Groups can be funded by the Declared Pest Rate, matched by State Government funding.
In Western Australia, 36 mammal, 22 bird and 11 reptile species are vulnerable to predation by feral cats, along with a wide range of other native animals that may be adversely affected by this pest.
Feral cats live and reproduce in the wild, surviving by hunting and scavenging.
The declaration is only for feral cats. Domestic cat owners can protect their cats by complying with the requirements of the Cat Act 2011, including registration, sterilisation and microchipping.
The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development's feral cat policy incorporates strategies to minimise the impact of feral cat control activities on domestic and stray cats.
More information about feral cats as a declared pest is available from the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development's website at: