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This is the background document to the Threat abatement plan for predation by feral cats (Department of the Environment 2015). Predation by feral cats was identified as a key threatening process in 1999 with the passage of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act). This document provides information to underpin the threat abatement plan and includes information on feral cat characteristics, biology and distribution; impacts on environmental, social and cultural values; and current management practices and measures. The threat abatement plan (TAP) establishes a national framework to guide and coordinate Australia’s response to the effects of predation by feral cats on biodiversity. It identifies the research, management and other actions needed to ensure the long-term survival of native species and ecological communities affected by feral cats. It replaces the Threat abatement plan for predation by feral cats published in 2008 (Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts 2008).