Saving birds' lives at the risk of making cats die of embarrassment.
New South Wales, AU. This cat's owner says "he has been unsuccessful in his attempts to hunt birds" since Birdsbesafe pic.twitter.com/V9e1SJsDi6— Birdsbesafe (@birdsbesafe) January 28, 2015
Domestic cats and tweety birds the world over have had a long-standing and rather one-sided feud: cats kill as many as 3.7 billion birds, mostly songbirds, every year in the US alone. One Vermont-based company, Birdsbesafe, is seeking to protect our feathery friends while imposing a little whimsical shame on our murdery, furry friends. How? With terrible, early-90s-esque scrunchies.
We discovered how to keep cats away from most birds. Songbirds have special color vision-- we made cats more visible! pic.twitter.com/S8LvBQz0t8— Birdsbesafe (@birdsbesafe) February 1, 2015
The scrunchies fit around a cat's normal collar, and their bright colors make it difficult for kitties to stalk and kill birds.
Verdant Vermont and a customer's cat in this photo. Cats will hunt for birds--winter or summer. Birdsbesafe can help! pic.twitter.com/s6r36DJwiK— Birdsbesafe (@birdsbesafe) January 22, 2015
Birds have more cones in their eyes, which are the receptors that allow animals to see color (humans have three kinds, but birds have a fourth kind that lets them see more colors). Cats are usually dull-colored (black, grey, sandy, etc) and hard for prey to spot.
Emmy, spokescat: The St. Lawrence U. field study of our bird-saving product will be published soon. Can hardly wait! pic.twitter.com/fLHbHwg1sY— Birdsbesafe (@birdsbesafe) January 15, 2015
As great as saving billions of birds is, it's hard to argue that from a human perspective (a perspective, let's be frank, that has never really cared too much about dead animals) the fact that it makes cats look like dumb-dumbs is just as valuable.
From an Australian repeat customer, caption says: "I really don't know which one to wear!" Bird-saving fashionista! pic.twitter.com/SHxVatpedT— Birdsbesafe (@birdsbesafe) December 7, 2014
So, thanks, Birdsbesafe, on behalf of birds and people who like laughing at cats everywhere.