Two thousand hours of video recorded by “kitty cams” from the National Geographic Society have uncovered the lives of indoor cats who are allowed outdoors. The surprising results that University of Georgia researchers found in tracking 60 cats wearing the lightweight cameras in Athens, Ga.:
44 percent hunted prey, with 30 percent preying upon lizards, snakes, frogs, chipmunks and the occasional vole. Only 28 percent of them ate prey, however.
85 percent risked danger by crossing two-lane streets and exploring tight spaces such as storm drains.
Four cats went into other houses, where families petted and fed them, “basically cheating on their original owners,” says lead researcher Kerrie Anne Loyd, a wildlife ecologist.
The findings were presented at the Ecological Society of America’s annual conference in Portland, Ore.