Letter to the Tampa Humane Society re: the fuzzbutts of GMBAN
My concern, as I have been involved with this particular group for nine years, is that the aggressive sterilization campaign this spring (four of five queens, and the dominant male, with at least one mature female who had kittens this spring and both an adult and adolescent male un-returned) may put the colony's genetic diversity at risk. I would like to be in touch with whomever is handling the TNR program nearest my home and this colony, since, with long experience with and exposure to the colony, I can provide a fairly comprehensive insight into the lineage of the current population so that its health, and that of the individual members, can be maintained at a safe and responsible level.
Historically, the colony has been roughly a dozen or so animals, with occasional bulges and dips (fall/winter of 2012 was a particularly low population, falling as low as five regular visitors to the feeding station at my residence), which makes this spring's litters of kittens both a needed boost to the colony and a point of concern - all four notched females were gravid this spring, and one of them has not returned to care for her sole surviving kitten (which has been, for lack of a less anthropomorphic term, adopted by the mother of a litter born four weeks later).
I have no small measure of affection and concern for this colony, having been familiar with them for so long, and have been working to socialize litters of kittens for either adoption to forever homes, or taking them into my own (my former housemate was a keeper at Lowry Park Zoo, and retained custody of our four felines when they moved out in 2011).
I would be more than happy to speak with someone from your organization to take over custody/curation of the local trap(s) and whatever else is involved in working with your program.
Thanks for your time and attention, and I look forward to hearing from you.