Cats Made to Wear Scrunchies Kill Far Fewer Birds

Forget about collars with bells. New research shows that cats who wear scrunchies around their necks kill 54% fewer birds, reptiles and amphibians.

Birds see the scrunchie from far off.
It’s more than a fashion statement. Birds see the scrunchie from far off. (ABC photo)

We usually think of scrunchies as a way to hold back our hair. Now, the elastic band of brightly colored cloth has a new use: to help protect wildlife from domestic cats.

A student at Murdoch University in Australia headed up a research study that monitored the behavior of 114 cats for 2 years.

Her study revealed a surprising statistic: Cats who wore brightly colored scrunchies around their necks killed half as many (54% fewer) birds, reptiles and amphibians than they normally killed.

Researchers believe the bright colors are responsible for the drastic difference. Birds have a keen eye for colorful objects, and a cat wearing a scrunchie is much easier for them to see from a distance.

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Whereas cats who wear a bell around their neck are known to learn how to be extra quiet and sneak up on wildlife, cats who wear scrunchies have no way to hide a scrunchie’s bright colors.

Here’s the bad news for mice and other small animals: Scrunchie-wearing cats are still a big danger because the bright colors don’t stand out as much to them.

Source: ABC

Gayle Hickman

View posts by Gayle Hickman
Gayle Hickman has been researching and writing about pet behaviors since 2011. In addition to Petful, her articles have appeared on Reader's Digest, Yahoo Shine and WebVet, to name a few.

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