Pet cats could be banned from a small coastal village of Omaui in New Zealand as part of radical new proposals designed to protect native wildlife.
Under Environment Southland's "pest plan", local cat owners will have to neuter, microchip and register their pets with the local authority.
After their cat dies, they will not be allowed to get another.
The proposals have angered local residents, including one individual named Nico Jarvis who accused the government of behaving "like a police state" and said that owning a cat was the only way to manage rat infestations in the area.
But the local authority wants to protect the 230 hectares of lowland and forest on Omauri that are home to small native birds including the fantail, brown creeper, grey warbler and shining cuckoo kingfisher, as well as larger ones such as the tui.
Biosecurity operations manager Ali Meade told national news outlet Newshub: "There's cats getting into the native bush, they're preying on native birds, they're taking insects, they're taking reptiles, all sorts of things. They're doing quite a bit of damage."