Aggie cats

November 23, 2009. Retrieved online November 30, 2009 from Sylvia Quintanilla, The Merge: Department of Journalism/Mass Communications online news magazine

Yellow eyes of silent campus residents brightly watch from the trees. Others lay out in the sun and sleep. New Mexico State University is not only home to the Aggies, but to feral cats as well.

Since 2002, the Feral Cat Management Program has conducted the Trap-Neuter-Release program on the NMSU campus to help reduce the feral cat population.

About FCaMP

FCaMP has reduced the feral cat population from 200-250 to “somewhere to 95” cats on the NMSU main campus. If the cats are socialized, FCaMP helps them find homes, 90 cats have found a home so far.

The mission of the organization is to spay, neuter and vaccinate felines on campus. Tipping the left ear of cats members have helped serves as identification.

FCaMP is a self-funded program; volunteers redeem aluminum cans and inkjet cartidges, accept private donations and host yard sales. The second week of November, they hosted a Butter Braid pastry holiday fundrasier. The money raised goes toward veterinary visits.

History of cats on campus

Before FCaMP was formed, groundskeepers from the university trapped cats to be taken to the animal shelter to be euthanized.

“It’s a vacuum effect, remove cats from the area and others cats take their place,” said Michelle Corella, director of FCaMP.

…Patti Benzie, Accounting Department secretary, has been feeding the cats for five years. She feeds them in the morning and on her way home in the afternoon.

Benzie said that some people may not like the feral cats on campus since they don’t like cats, but added, “If you get rid of them more will just come back. Why not take care of them?”

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