Photo from Unsplash. 

Last week for the web, writer Leigh Tauss reported on the Raleigh City Council’s consideration of an ordinance that would ban ownership of wild animals—anything from big cats to alligators to venomous snakes—but would also rein in what residents could do with slightly less wild animals; for instance, under the ordinance, you could no longer feed wild ducks or feral cats. You better believe our readers had thoughts. 

“Some of this is going a little too far!!,” wrote Facebook commenter Jackie Jackie. “Ducks? Feeding feral cats? Why not increase the TNR funding for your feral cat program instead of hoping we starve them to death.” 

“Needs a bit of tightened draftsmanship and more careful thought,” wrote commenter Kathleen Pepi Southern. “Trending toward ‘throwing the baby out with the bathwater’ so to speak.”

“OMG, I’m so terrified of ducks and all their quacking and egg laying,” wrote commenter Elise Oras. “And opossums with their game of playing dead — how scary! Hide your kids!”

“Wtf did the ducks do?,” asks commenter Tom Mcdonald

A reasonable question.

Other readers found the whole debate to be a distraction from the real problems plaguing the city. Commenter Pam Bass took issue with City Council member David Knight calling Raleigh “not a farm.”

“I know it’s not a farm, you keep building shit to help us remember!!,” Pam said.  

“All that extra time the city has not focusing on sorting out the affordable housing crisis just goes to non-issues like outlawing ducks and opossums,” wrote commenter Laura Brooke.  

“What she said,” agreed commenter Vanessa Bryan. “How about if you all address making housing more affordable I promise not to run a possum sanctuary out of my house.”

The debate over the “wild animal” ordinance promises to remain riveting. Check out Tauss’s print story this week where she tries to get to the bottom of whether Raleigh Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin has been violating any city laws currently on the books by feeding a feral cat that roams around her downtown condo. 

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