In this episode of Embarrassing English Errors I teach you the subtile difference in pronunciation of the words “Crap” & “Crab”.
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Embarrassing English Errors Ep07 – Crap & Crab
G’day guys and welcome to this episode of Embarrassing English Errors.
Today’s we’re going to go over the two words “Crap” and “Crab”.
So, “Crap” means poo. It’s a slang word. It’s pretty benign. It’s not very strong or offensive, you know, you can say “Crap”… it’s the kind of word I could use in front of my parents, um… but they’re pretty relaxed with this sort of language. So, it’s not too rude, but it is a rude… it’s considered a rude word. “Crap”. You’re referring to poo but you’re not saying it in a nicer way. “Crap”.
The word “Crab” is an animal. It’s a crustacean. It has two big pincers at the front of it. You’ll see them at the beach in the water. “Crabs”. So, this episode’s based on the difference in the ending of these two words, “Crap” and “Crab”. So it’s the “P” and the “B” sounds. So, it’s… it can be important to… to not confuse these two sounds when you’re saying these words obviously if you go to a restaurant and you’re asking for a “Crab” and you accidentally ask for “Crap” that can be a bit of an embarrassing situation.
So, what are some different words in English that have that same “Ap” sound in them like the word “Crap”.
And some other words that sound like “Crab” and have that “Ab” sound in them.
So, let’s now go over the two “Ap” and “Ab” sounds five times.
Ap – Ab x 5
And, now we’ll put some different consonants in front of “Ap” and “Ab”.
Stap – Stab
Trap – Trab
Blap – Blab
Thap – Thab
Map – Mab
Clap – Clab
Slap – Slab
Rap – Rab
Strap – Strab
Thrap – Thrab
And, now we can go over the words “crap” and “crab” ten times back to back.
Crap – Crab x 10
So, that’s today’s episode, guys. Let me know what you think on Facebook and if you have any other words or any other sounds that you’re finding hard to pronounce in English, whether it’s Australian English, American English, English English, let me know, send me a message or a comment on Facebook or on the Webpage and I’ll try and make an episode on it as soon as I can. And also let me know what you think of these episodes, guys, and if they’re helping you improve your pronunciation. I know they’re a little bit boring but that’s why I’m trying to keep them short, short and sweet, so that you guys can listen to them quickly, maybe once, twice, you know, however many times you want daily, weekly, just every time you want to practice your pronunciation a little. So, until next times guys have a good one!
If you guys enjoyed this episode of Embarrassing English Errors then make sure you check out the rest of the episodes and transcripts here. Also, don’t forget to come visit me on Facebook and let me know what you think of the podcast and say hey to the Aussie English community!
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About the AuthorI learn languages, teach Australian English, and love all things science and nature!
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By pete — 1 year ago
In this grammar episode of Aussie English I answer the question, “What’s the difference between THAT & THIS”? It’s simpler than you may think!
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By pete — 2 years ago
In this episode, Walking With Pete: Breaking Things Down Into Manageable Parts, I talk to you guys about how it’s much easier to tackle big problems, big tasks, big goals, if you break them down into their most manageable parts. So, simplify and conquer.
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Walking With Pete: Breaking Things Down Into Manageable Parts
G’day guys. Welcome to this episode of Walking With Pete.
Today I’m here and I want to chat to you a little bit about language learning, though it’s applicable to anything, you know, to be honest. Um… Ok, and the topic is sort of going to be focused on one thing, so simplify, whenever you’re trying to improve in an area pick one thing to work on, and for me at least, I’m a bottom up guy. I work from the thing that I’m worst at. So, with regards to learning languages, one… one piece of advice that I really offer you guys, because I know how easy it is to sort of be overwhelmed by how many things you have to work on, that you have to improve, that you have to… to try and get better at, and I know, I keep feeling this with French and with Portuguese where I can speak, I know I can speak, you know. I can talk about certain things and then as soon as I get to one area that I’m not familiar with I feel like I absolutely suck, I’m awful. I can’t… I can’t communicate, I can’t say what I want to say, I keep getting stuck, and I can’t find the words in my head, or I don’t even know the words that I want to say. And I guess it comes down to needing to break down the whole, needing to break down the entire task. So, the task say of learning Portuguese to fluency. And, breaking that down into tiny tiny manageable little pieces. So, things that I can get done today, things that I can get done in the next week, in the next month, in the next year, whatever it is, but have very small [short] term goals. Like bricks in a wall you don’t… you don’t really build the wall in a single go, in a single shot, you don’t do it all at once, you have to do it brick by brick, right? So, you can only pick up say, one or two bricks at a time and place them in the wall in order to build the entire wall, the brick wall. You can’t… you can’t look at the entire pile of bricks and be like, “Ok, everything in one shot. How do I get the pile of bricks into a single… into a single wall in one go?” Obviously, you have to say, “What’s the easiest brick for me to pick up”, turn around, “Where am I putting it?” Bam! “I’m going to get started there and then I’m going to make the entire wall brick by brick.” So, the same applies for languages I feel, and I have to keep reminding myself this… this… of this fact all the time too because I always forget it, and it’s… it’s so much easier to be annoyed with yourself, it’s so much easier to be angry, to be frustrated, to… to say it’s too hard, you know. Saying something is too difficult and trying to find reasons not to do something is so much easier, it’s so so so much easier to do that than to find reasons why you can do it. You know. This is… it’s one of those human psychological things that we fall back on all the time. We want to find a reason not to do something. We want to find a reason that something is too hard for us to do. That it’s impossible for us to do, because it’s so much easier to say that we can’t do it and then fail, and then say “Well, I told you so! I told you I couldn’t do it! So, I don’t look like an idiot now when I fail”, compared with saying, “You know what, I can do this! I can do this thing. I can learn English to fluency. I may not learn it this week to fluency, I may not learn it this year to fluency, It may take me ten years to learn to fluency but I can do it. Anyone can do it. And I’m going to start with this single brick, you know, I’m going to learn this bit of grammar or I’m going to study this area of vocab today, this week, this month. I’m going to ace this one small thing. I’m going to do really well at this one small thing, and once I get that down I’m going to focus on another thing.” And too often too with language learning it kind of gets difficult because you’re working with memory and memory fades, right? So, you don’t always learn one thing and then remember it forever. You have to constantly be refreshing things. So, it’s almost like you’re… you’re making this brick wall brick by brick and every now and then someone’s coming along and a brick disappears. Someone takes a brick out of the wall, you know, and it’s like, you turn around and all of a sudden there’s a hole in the wall and you have to fill it again. And I think that’s one of those things that is just reality. You have to remember that even in your own native language if you learn a word for something, for instance, someone’s name. You just learned someone’s name. It’s a name you’ve heard before. It’s a name you know. You can spell it. You could say it 100 times. You’d never forget how to say that name, but within a minute you’ve forgotten that that’s the person’s name. It’s just how memory works, and I have to remind myself this all the time, you know, especially when… when learning new vocabulary, especially when there’s no… there’s no um… resemblance to the word or the… the… the grammar rule in English, and it’s completely unique, it’s completely new, I’ve never seen it before and I have to learn it from scratch, I have to learn it from the very beginning. I have to constantly remind myself that I’m only human. My memory isn’t absolute, it’s not perfect, it’s not a photographic memory, I’m going to forget things and I just have to constantly remind myself of things. I have to… maybe there are things that I’ll have to learn again and again and again and again and again, maybe I’ll never remember everything, but I know that I can [learn things]. I know that I can improve. I know that I can learn a language to fluency. And so, I have to keep finding reasons to tell myself, “No you can do it. You can get there just keep at it.” You know, pick one small thing, break it down into one small thing to focus on right now, to focus on today, to focus on this week, and do well at that and then we’ll practice our… then we’ll tackle, then we’ll deal with the next problem, and we’ll take it step by step. So, it comes… it comes back to a really nice analogy that I heard. I’ve forgotten where I heard this but the analogy was effectively that you’re driving at night from one city to another city, say you’re driving from Melbourne up the east coast of Australia and you’re going to drive to Sydney in a single night. It’s… it’s um… something like 1200 kilometres to get from Melbourne to Sydney, you know, it’s about 12 hours to drive. And… you don’t drive it all at once, right, you don’t… it’s not one single go, you don’t… what am I trying to say? You don’t… you don’t get to start at point A and see point B on the horizon, especially when it’s something like that that’s 1200 kilometres away, and just start walking [driving*] and bang, you’re from A to B, you arrive. You have to drive somewhere like Melbourne to Sydney 200 feet at a time. So, what do I mean by this? The idea is that your headlights are on on your car, and your headlights can see 200 feet in front of you, and that’s what you drive [the 200 feet], that is what you deal with immediately at that moment. The only thing that you’re focused on at any one given point in time while you’re driving that amount of distance is actually only 200 feet in front of you, as far as the light can see. And so, you’re only dealing with whatever the light touches for that entire trip. You’re not looking at the trip as a whole and having to deal with it all at once, you’re just dealing with and reacting to what you can see at that moment 200 feet, 200 metres, whatever it is, in front of you, in front of the car, you know, say a rabbit jumps out you have to avoid it by driving around it. You take corners, you stop at lights, but you don’t have to… you don’t have to plan to stop and turn at every single corner that you’re going to face on that entire trip all at once. You just do it bit by bit. And language learning, or learning anything of any kind, is pretty much the same. You can’t plan it all. You can’t sit down and say, “Ok today I’m going to learn French to fluency.” You have to just say… you have to be honest with yourself, “What at the moment can I learn? What don’t I know? And how can I start tackling that problem right now?” Or say you do have a foundation in whatever it is that you’re trying to learn, say you already know the basics of English, say, you know… you already… you already know how to… oh… anything else, anything else. You already know the basic rules of a game, you already know how to stand up when you’re surfing. “What is the very next thing that is the next immediate step, the next immediate little piece that I can get better at to put me 200 feet closer to Sydney as I’m driving from Melbourne [for example]? What’s the next step forward?” And tackle that one by one, and eventually all of these things add up and you get to exactly to where you want to be, which could be fluency in English.
So, I guess that was the main idea today. It was to sort of give those basic points of it’s hard, don’t look at it as the whole journey and you’re having to work out how to do the entire journey in a single sitting, you know, you don’t sit down and say “Ok, this is the exact route that I’m going to follow to get from Melbourne to Sydney”, because things happen, things come up, um… problems arise that you have to deal with then and there, and the same with learning a language. Things you’ll learn faster than you will others, things you’ll forget 100 times, things you may be able to intuit, you may be able to understand straight away without really having to learn, and you didn’t… you didn’t plan on it and that happens. So, so, I guess it just comes back to being honest with yourself too. You need to remind yourself that you’re only human, give yourself a break, and then also to focus on what you’re worst at. So, level things up from the bottom, for me at least. When I’m playing something like a video game I try and get good at what I’m worst at in order to sort of have a better average, and… as opposed to getting really really really good at one thing and never stepping out of my comfort zone as we say in English. So, “To step out of your comfort zone”, so if say, you have an imaginary… you have an imaginary um… zone around you that you’re comfortable in and you step outside of it to somewhere that you’re uncomfortable, this is what you need to do all the time if you want to learn as quickly as possible, because you don’t get better um… when you’re trying to learn something new or to improve something that you’re learning by doing what you can already do well, you know. If you want to get better at lifting weights and lift heavier weights you don’t just try and lift more of the same weight. You’re going to have to lift heavier. You have to up it every now and then. You have to use a heavier weight. So, the same with language learning. Anyway, I’ve rambled on quite a bit today, but the basic points were 1. Break things down into the smallest manageable pieces, so don’t get overwhelmed by the whole, don’t look at the mountain as, you know, an entire mountain, but say, “What is the… the smallest part of the mountain that I can deal with today? What can I solve? What can I learn? What can I practice right now that will get me one step further onto this journey, or through this journey?” and then tackle that problem. And 2. Also try and aim at the things that you’re worst at. I think… and that’s one of those things where you have to be honest with yourself, which is hard at times, because a lot of the time we don’t want to hold a mirror up to our… ourselves and look at ourselves objectively and say, “Well actually I kind of suck at this”, but if you can focus on the things that you suck at and get really good at those, and keep practice those and improving those, very quickly you’re not going to suck at anything. So, that’s the main message for today guys, and I hope it helps. Let me know what you think. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe I have more to learn on this subject too. So, give me your opinion on Facebook. Give me your opinion via a message, via a comment, you know, email me. Let me know what you think, and I’ll chat to you soon guys. All the best!
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By Admin — 1 month ago
AE 511 – Expression: Not Have a Bar of It
I’m Barry, living in American River, Kangaroo Island. I trap feral cats and give them another home. I keep a record of every cat that I catch and the total’s 1438.
I’m not that fussed if people have their cats. I just have the thing for the feral cat. People think I’m a cat hater, but I’m not. We just hate the feral ones. (The) domestic cat just sits and meows and says “Meow, feed me!”, but it’s the feral ones.
The cats that I’ve removed will probably have killed millions of birds. Birdlife around the river has dramatically improved.
Far out! Far out! It is a boiling day today. It is sweltering. It is steaming. It is incredibly hot. So, yesterday, it was like 34 degrees, I think, today’s 36, and I know some of you are from places around the world where that is nothing.You know, I understand that, but for me in Australia, especially, in the very, very south part of Australia, the mainland, in Victoria, 36 is getting pretty hot. Although, yeah, we’ve had some days in the past that got up to 48. I remember it being 51 degrees inside my car at one point in the past and that was just ridiculous. Anyway.
It’s been hot, and I guess, I’ve been suffering from it more because I’ve been moving house. So, as you guys may or may not know, Kel and I recently moved into our new house, in fact, we moved in two days ago, but didn’t stay there the night, because we had all our stuff at my parents’ place still, the bed stuff and everything, so we stayed here, and they had air conditioning. So, that was one thing. But then last night or yesterday, we went down there and stayed the night there and I’ve been running around like a headless chook, running around like crazy, buying second-hand furniture and all sorts of things off Gumtree and Market Place on Facebook. You may have seen the video I did on that on YouTube. So, lots of collecting stuff, filling the car up, going to the new house, unloading the car, and doing that in the heat has been a massive chore. Anyway. I won’t rabbit on too much about that, but that’s what I’ve been up to.
Today, the movie scene at the very start there, guys, was a clip from a Vice documentary called ‘Shooting Cats’. Now, Vice is a really good organisation.They do lots of these interesting sort of docos and news articles, news items online that you can find if you just search, Vice, V-I-C-E. This documentary was about the problem of cats in Australia and the hunters who tried to reduce the numbers of these feral cats. So, it’s a contentious issue. You know, the house moggy, your average house cat, vs. the feral cat, the native animal assassin inAustralia.
So, watch that doco ‘Shooting Cats’. It’s about 20 or 30 minutes long. It’s a great chance to learn about Australian culture and to introduce yourselves to a few of Australia’s more colorful characters. Strong accent warning too. And there’ll be a link to that in the transcript. Anyway.
That aside, guys, this is the Aussie English Podcast, the number one podcast for anyone learning Australian English or anyone learning English in general and trying to get from intermediate to advanced and beyond in their English abilities.
So, it’s brought to you by The Aussie English Classroom. That is my online website with the courses that I put together for these episodes and a lot of other content to help you improve pronunciation, expand your vocab, and learn these expressions, as well as meet a lot of other people who are also learningEnglish. That you can sign up for at TheAussieEnglishClassroom.com and is just one point for your first month so get in there and give it a go. If that’s not your thing and you’re just after the transcripts for these episodes and theMP3s and you want to download them so you can listen and read anywhere, anytime, go to TheAussieEnglishPodcast.com, and click sign up, and for the price of one coffee per month you will get access to all of the transcripts, all of the MP3s for all of these episodes.Anyway.
That aside, let’s get into the Aussie joke for today, guys. So, considering we had the doco at the start they’re ‘Shooting Cats’. I thought, you know what, I will find a cat joke. Okay, so here’s the joke:
Why don’t cats like online shopping? Why don’t cats like online shopping online?Why don’t they like shopping online?
They prefer a ‘cat-alogue’. They prefer a ‘cat-alogue’.
Do you get it? Cat-alogue, right? So. you can shop online via websites, but you can also shop using catalogues, right, those sort of like magazine-style things, but for just selling products. So, that’s the joke.
So, today’s expression, guys. Today’s expression is ‘to not want a bar of something’ or ‘to not want a bar of it’ or ‘to not have a bar of something’ or ‘to not have a bar of it’, right. You’ll hear this in many different ways.Sometimes it will be with the verb ‘have’ sometimes with ‘want’, sometimes it’ll be ‘of something’. Sometimes you’ll just say ‘of it’ and this expression was suggested by Shiny in the Aussie English Classroom. Good job, Shiny. So, every week we suggest the expressions we want to vote on and the winning expression becomes the one for the week. Anyway.
Let’s get into it and define the different words in this expression.
So, obviously, ‘to have’, if you have something or you don’t have something that is that you possess the thing or you do not possess the thing, right. Like, I have a t-shirt on at the moment. I have two parents. I have a car. You know, I possess those things.
‘To want’. I am sure you will all know what ‘want’ is, guys, to desire something, to feel like something. You know, at the moment, I want it to be less hot. At the moment, I want a cold drink. ‘Want’.
And the last word there, guys, ‘a bar’. Now, I don’t exactly know why this has been used in this expression and what exactly it is referring to, but I would imagine that somehow it is referring to a long rigid piece of wood metal or similar material. So, for instance, if you go to jail, the… I guess, the metal sort of fence that is in front of your cell is made up of bars, right, bars of metal, bars of metal. So, it’s usually something that’s like long and thin, right. So, you could have a chocolate bar, right, a chocolate bar. So, if you don’t want a bar of something, I guess, in this case, it just means… ‘the bar’ means that you don’t want a part of that thing, right. I’m not 100% sure.Anyway.
Let’s go through the expression definition. So, ‘to not want a bar of something’. If you don’t want a bar of something, that is that you want nothing to do with that thing or it could even be someone. So, you want… you’re not interested at all in having anything related, to do, with that thing, right. So, I don’t want to be involved. I don’t want to… I just want nothing to do with it.Okay, I don’t want a bar of it. I want nothing to do with it.
And if you don’t have a bar of something, or if you’re not going to have a bar of something, you won’t have a bar or something, you wouldn’t have a bar of something, that can mean something slightly different meaning be unable to tolerate something, to dislike something, to not accept something, or to not allow something to happen. Okay.
So, let’s go through three examples of how I would use this expression or these expressions, right, to not want a bar of something and to not have a bar of something. Alright.
So, example number one. Imagine you’re a teenager, you’re at school, and the next class that you have to go to is PE, and ‘PE’ stands for Physical Education, right, so sports. So, maybe you’re a bit of a fat kid, you know, you’re a little bit chubby, you’re overweight, and you can’t run very well, you’ve always been a bit bad at sports, you know, you’re not very athletic, you’re not much of a jock, and you get out of breath really quickly. So, you really dislike exercise overall and you think it’s pointless and an unpleasant endeavor. In order to try and get out of PE class, you tell your teacher that you’ve got a trumpet lesson, and unfortunately, it clashes with the PE class, meaning it is on at the same time as the PE class. It clashes with it. So, you have to go and you have to do this trumpet lesson and you have to give the class amiss. However, the teacher knows how much you hate PE class and also that you’re not currently learning the trumpet, so that’s a bit of a lie, it’s a fib, you’ve made up that story, okay. So, although, you don’t want to have a bar of a class, because you hate it and want to get out of it, the teacher isn’t going to have a bar of your excuses and he won’t let you skip class. So, you don’t want a bar of PE class, you want to skip it, but the teacher isn’t going to have a bar of it, of your excuses, and makes you stay and do a class instead. So, you dislike PE class and you want to avoid it, you do not want a bar of it, but the teacher won’t allow you to do that, so he’s not having a bar of it. He’s not going to put up with you trying to skip class.
Example number two. Imagine you are a gymnast or maybe an athlete, you know, someone who likes to do parkour in the street where people run around the streets and treat stairs and other structures as a sort of obstacle courses to jump through and under and over, all of that sort of stuff. So, you were out training one day with your mates, but you had a fall and busted your leg, right, you hurt your leg on the concrete when you landed. It’s nothing too serious or severe, but after seeing the doctor you are told that you need to rest up, you need to take it easy, you need to recover, you need to recuperate, and give your leg a few weeks to heal before you go back to training. Despite the advice the doctor’s given you, you’re incredibly impatient and you can’t be bothered waiting. So, you want to go out and train a few days after the accident, but your leg is so sore that you can’t do it. Your leg isn’t going to have a bar of it. Your legs not going to allow you to do it, right. It doesn’t want anything to do with training. So, you might complain and say, Ah, my damn leg! I want to train, but it’s not having a bar of it, or it doesn’t want to have a bar of it.Your leg isn’t going to allow you to train, it won’t tolerate training, it won’t have a bar of it. You’ll just have to rest up for a week or so.
So, example number three. So, let’s use some informal Aussie slang. Okay. Imagine you’re a bloke, so an Australian male, and you’re married to a ripper of a sheila, right. And ‘a ripper of something’ means ‘an awesome thing’, and ‘a sheila is ‘a woman’. So, ‘a ripper of a sheila’, ‘a great woman’. You’re a bloke married to a ripper of a sheila, and you guys have a bun in the oven, she’s up the duff, she’s expecting, she’s pregnant, right. They’re all different expressions for pregnant. And your first little nipper, your first little child, is going to be born in a few months. So, when your little bub is born, ‘bub’ as in ‘baby’, you think it’s still all good for you to nick off down the pub, so ‘go down to the pub’, every other night or so, go to barbies with your mates, sink a few tinnies a few stubbies, so these are cans and glass bottles of beer, tinnies and stubbies, and leave your wife at home who’s a recent first time mum all home alone with the bub to deal with it all herself.If she snaps though and she won’t tolerate you doing this, she won’t put up with you leaving her all alone at home having fun with your mates, she’s not going to have a bar of it, right. She doesn’t want a bar of it. She’s not going to have a bar of it. So, she won’t allow you to just leave her at home all alone with the baby, with the bub, and let you go off and have fun with your mates. Maybe she’s upset too, because she thinks you don’t want a bar of her.So, maybe she thinks you want nothing to do with her. You’re annoyed with her, right. You don’t want a bar of her. You’re not interested in her or the baby.You want nothing to do with them, you dislike them, you don’t want a bar of them. So, being a ripper of a new dad, though, you decide you’ll take it easy, you’ll stay at home, you won’t party anymore, you’ll spend some quality time with your ripper of a sheila, with your wife, your missus, and your bub for the near future and you’ll do your duty. Good man. Good man. Alright, guys.
So, hopefully now, you understand the expression ‘to not want a bar of something ‘or ‘to not want a bar of it’ meaning to want nothing to do with it, with something, with someone. And the expression ‘to not have a bar of something’ or someone or ‘to not have a bar of it’, and this means to be unable to tolerate something, to dislike something, to not accept something, to not allow something to happen.
So, as usual, let’s go through a little listen and repeat exercise, guys, where you guys can practice your English pronunciation, okay. So, concentrate on the wayI’m linking these words, the intonation I’m using, the pronunciation, and remember, if you want to get the video breakdown of this exercise and all the other exercises in all the other courses, make sure that you sign up at theAussieEnglishClassroom.com.It’s just one dollar for your first month. The link will be in the transcript, but check it out if you want to work on your spoken English. Anyway, let’s go.
To have a
To have a bar
To have a bar of
To have a bar of it x 5
I’m not going to have a bar of it.
You’re not going to have a bar of it.
She’s not going to have a bar of it.
He’s not going to have a bar of it.
We’re not going to have a bar of it.
They’re not going to have a bar of it.
It’s not going to have a bar of it.
Good job. There is a lot of connected speech going on there, right.
‘I’m not going_to have_a bar_of_it’.
There is a lot of connected speech. Remember, to check out the video guys in theAussie English Classroom to learn all of those tricks and tips. Anyway.
Let’s go through the Aussie English fact for the day guys and then we will finish up and I will let you continue on your merry way, with your day, you know, I’ll let you keep doing whatever it is that you’re doing.
So, as we had that little documentary at the start that I was showing you that was’Shooting Cats’ talking about feral cats in Australia, I thought that we could talk a bit about feral cats in Australia and why there’s such a problem. Okay.
how did cats get to Australia?
Cats first arrived obviously with the first Europeans. So, on the first ships that came to Australia, from when the First Fleet arrived and onwards there were definitely domestic cats in Australia, and it’s even possible that the earlierDutch ship wrecks around Australia released domestic cats onto the continent.
So, why were they on ships in the first place, though?
Cats were on ships, as they had been used elsewhere for millennia, for pest control, right. They had been there in order to keep rats, mice, and even cockroaches at bay, to try and control those pest species, to control their numbers.
So, once the First Fleet arrived in Australia, these cats were brought ashore and allowed to sort of roam freely in the hopes of controlling pests around the early colony. So, these free-roaming domestic cats, obviously, escaped or just simply wandered off into the bush, but they were also intentionally released around farmland and homesteads in order to control rats and mice and rabbits as well. And rabbits are another problem pest in Australia that had also been released at about the same time as a source of food that people could hunt.
So, historical records date the introduction of cats to Australia to around 1804, and that the first cats became feral around Sydney by about 1820. And by the early 1900s, concern was expressed at the pervasiveness of the cat problem. So, they were already a cat problem by the early 1900s. Okay.
So, cats became feral and they lived in the bush in Australia, but why is that a problem? You know, why are cats… why are cute, cuddly nice little cats a problem in Australia?
So, terrestrially speaking, that means in terms of talking about the land as opposed to the ocean, cats as a group, a group of mammals, are some of the most successful predators to currently be inhabiting any parts of the world, so, the world’s environments and habitats, cats are an amazing predator. They are killing machines. In whichever environment you find them, they are stealthy assassins, stealthy killing machines, and despite being relatively newcomers toAustralia, they are as successful here as anywhere else in the world, potentially even more so, because so many of the animals in Australia are naive to cats, they do not understand that cats pose a threat, right, because they haven’t evolved with cats in the local environment.
So, cats also have very few predators, namely dingoes and wedge-tailed eagles, Australia’s largest eagle, and dingoes are native dog that we have here in Australia. So, where these native Aussies don’t live, the dingoes and the wedge-tailed eagles, cats reign supreme as the local apex predator, meaning the predator at the top of the food chain. They don’t have to fear anyone eating them and they can pretty much eat anything else.
Feral cats also have a vicious and voracious appetite. They will eat pretty much anything that lands on their plate, anything that walks in front of them, right, anything that they come across. Thus, they are very bad news for any ground-nesting birds, any lizards, small mammals, frogs, insects that also live on the ground, and they have likely underpinned, that is they have caused, the population collapse and extinction of many Australian native animals, which is quite tragic. So, they are currently thought to threaten the existence of at least 35 birds, 36 mammals, 7 reptiles, and 3 amphibians. Really, really tragic.
So, today there are estimated to be about 3.3 million pet cats in Australia, that is domestic cats, living in houses, and they’re found in about 29% of Aussie homes. In comparison, so keep that number in mind, 3.3 million pets, there is between 18 and 23 million feral cats living, prowling, stealthily moving about all corners of the Australian continent except tropical rainforest. So, there’s almost one cat… there’s potentially one cat per person roaming around free in Australia killing native animals.
So, what does this mean? Well, greater than 18 million cats need to eat a lot of food and that means 7 million native animals a day, to be precise, which equates to a staggering 27 billion animals per year that these cats eat in Australia. So, obviously, it is a heavy toll on the Australian environment, well, and the animals.
Besides the obvious threat to native wildlife that this ferocious apex predator poses, they also pose a significant threat to your average household moggy, your average household cat, as they can transmit diseases, they can fight and injure your cats as well. So, they’re a big, big, big problem. This is why manyAussies, including your average Joe to your hunters as well as your conservationists and environmentalists have declared war on the feral cat and want to see them eradicated from the wild.
So, though, you may compare them to your average domestic cat, they are completely different, they are a completely different beast. They are vicious wild animals that pose a threat to the existence of numerous native species.
If you own a cat in Australia, this is why it’s so important to keep them inside at all times so as to keep them away from other feral cats or people’s pet cats next door and also to prevent them running away, getting injured, and killing native animals too, most importantly. Anyway, guys.
I hope you enjoy this episode. I hope you sort of have a bit more of a deeper understanding of Australian culture and to understand why cats are an amazing pet, but it’s so important to keep them inside. Keep them locked up. Don’t just let them roam around freely. Okay. Anyway.
I hope you have an amazing weekend, guys, and I will chat to you soon. All the best. Peace out. See you later.
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