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Old 08-24-2012, 12:26 AM   #41
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I used to get a kick out of the possums coming to my back patio at night, but I didn't actually "feed" them. I think they were coming for bugs mostly. They would occasionally help themselves to the fig tree, and one even tried to chew into the bottle of fish emulsion, but I didn't intentionally leave that out as food.

One night at an RV site I was sitting under the stars enjoying a bowl of ice cream and staring up into the sky when a raccoon walked right up and nudged my foot. I couldn't believe it! Of course my outraged reaction sent that racoon scampering away.

But I've known lots of people who feed deer and raccoons and get a big kick out of the number who show up. I prefer not to have a large number of mammals appear in my yard.
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Old 08-24-2012, 05:53 AM   #42
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I was in favor of being rendered infertile (at government expense), but I draw the line at having one of my ears clipped.

Although now that I think about it, a feature on public display like that might be a great way to pick up hot chicks...
Ha! The women would feed you and then you're trapped...
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Old 08-24-2012, 07:00 AM   #43
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A funny thing happened at work the other day.... I was talking to a coworker and she said 'we feed at least two feral cats and a raccoon'.

It just floored me.... she actually thinks she is doing a 'good thing'...
You're co-worker's back yard 5 years from today:
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Old 08-24-2012, 11:18 PM   #44
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Ha! The women would feed you and then you're trapped...
Well, gosh, thank goodness my life didn't turn out that way!

Oh wait.
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Old 08-26-2012, 08:09 PM   #45
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Yesterday morning and today we sighted two cats that look very much like Cujo and Boots, the first two cats we caught.

Before the homeowners moved out, they were feeding three other cats (in addition to the three we've caught) that we used to see roaming the neighborhood. For whatever reason, we haven't seen any of those three since the homeowners left. I don't think the owners would've taken them on the airplane, but maybe other people took the cats... or the cats moved on.

But we got a really good look at these two in broad daylight, and Cujo & Boots are definitely back in the neighborhood. Yesterday Boots was on our back lanai heading down the steps (where we later found cat poop) and today both of them were on the homeowner's driveway.

I suppose it's possible that these are actually two different cats that look very much like Cujo & Boots, especially if they're from a common litter. But it's probably more likely that the Humane Society called up the owners and had them come downtown to bail out their cats. Or perhaps the term is "parole".

So tonight I'm moving the trap to the back lanai where Boots passed by, and loading it with more stinky tuna. But both cats have been back for at least 24 hours-- more likely over a week-- and apparently have learned not to stick their heads into traps. We'll keep setting the trap and perhaps we'll have a chance to reinforce that learning.

The good news is that three cats have been MIA for at least a week, and the two we've caught have been very quiet going through our yard. The overall cat presence is way down, and it's been silent on the streets at night.

Maybe that orange cat (no chip and nameless) was the source of the noise, or maybe they've all learned to stop hanging around our yard making noise. Either way spouse is happy.
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Old 08-26-2012, 08:18 PM   #46
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Hate to say it Nords, but chances are once you clear out this group out more cats will move into the vacated territory, feeders or not. This is known as the "vaccum effect". Even so, I do admire your efforts at a humane solution. Good luck and keep us posted !
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Old 08-27-2012, 05:39 AM   #47
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I would think that if they have been fixed and returned, they would not be yowling and fighting like before. It should get quieter, no?

My guess is that once caught in a trap...that cat has been educated on that piece on human invention. Those guys ain't dumb. That means that Nords will have to resort to running around at night wearing his Cat Cape with throw net in hand...Hmmmm...a Late Night Super Hero...
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Old 08-27-2012, 10:04 AM   #48
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My thinking is that most of the noise was over territory.... and the one that was not returned was the one that the others did not like...

Around here it seems that the borders have been agreed and most cats are OK with what they control.... they do not want to start a war to expand.... every once in awhile you hear a border dispute, but it is usually solved quickly....

I have also noticed that some allow travel over their territory... but the interloper better not loiter...
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Old 08-27-2012, 07:11 PM   #49
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Around here we have natural feral cat traps:
hehehe - we have those, too, only thing is when they have a kill at night, the howling.......cute bunnies and pack rats, too - they aren't noisy, but I imagine they are tasty mammals on the desert wash food chain around here.
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Old 08-27-2012, 07:37 PM   #50
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hehehe - we have those, too, only thing is when they have a kill at night, the howling.......cute bunnies and pack rats, too - they aren't noisy, but I imagine they are tasty mammals on the desert wash food chain around here.


So, you have honey badgers there?

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Old 01-06-2013, 12:12 AM   #51
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I should retitle this thread to "Feral cat noise: the never-ending saga".

It's been mostly quiet since August. We never caught any more critters, and we put the trap away after Labor Day. We've had sporadic sightings of the cats around the neighborhood, particularly Boots & Cujo. We continue to have cat droppings on our lanai and our sidewalk. The landlady's sister-in-law continues to visit the rental property to restock the outdoor cat food dishes on its front porch, despite even their tenant's wishes to be left alone. Several of our neighbors are complaining now, and the other day I saw a rat hanging around their driveway. But the sister-in-law remains obdurate, convinced that the cat welfare is more important than a bunch of neighborhood whiners.

A neighbor gave us the second-hand followup on our last cat-trapping episode. Boots and Cujo both had chips, and they were for the landlord. The Hawaii Humane Society called the chip's phone number (disconnected) and sent snail mail to its address. The snail mail ended up being forwarded from what was now rental property to their new home in the Bay Area, where the landlord called her sister-in-law (one town over from us) to go parole the felines. They (I'm talking about the felines here) spent 10 days in custody before being released on their own recognizance near the scene of their original crimes.

In other words, the courts let us down.

Last month we had another mating flareup between a feral male (who's apparently way too smart to take the trap bait) and one of the females. (Now I'm talking about the cats, not the landlords or tenants.) The caterwauling (literally) woke me up at 1:30 AM. I sneaked down to the driveway and practically had my hands on the male before he noticed me, and it was fun to watch his evasive reaction. But we hauled our trap back out of the attic and set it up on the sidewalk.

After this noisy flareup, once again we baited the trap with stinky cat food and stinky tuna... and we waited. I'm pretty sure the rat was overwhelmed with choices, but the next two weeks were supremely boring repetitions of checking the trap 3x/daily. (Apparently the rat is too light to trigger the cat trap's pivoting floor panel, but I'll bait a separate live rat trap for that guy.) After a while we ran out of ideas and kept up the routine, but at least it was quiet at night.

Then a few days ago we came home from surfing and sonofagun, the trap was triggered. I pulled the sheet off the top-- well, hello Boots! Apparently the last trapping session was of negligible long-term training value.

Instead of driving the cat back to the lenient feline juvie court, we drove it six miles to a secure undisclosed location neighborhood by a farm. We opened the cage door and the Boots headed straight for the barn. I hope it's happy. I mean the cat, not the barn.

Less than 48 hours later spouse looked out our livingroom window onto the front lanai and saw what looked like Boots curled up on our slider sofa. Upon further examination it turned out to be a slightly fatter but close approximation of Boots, probably a sibling. (Still no sign of Cujo.) Boots2 scampered out of our yard onto the adjacent sewage pumphouse property and hid in the field behind it.

So yesterday we baited the trap with catnip. We'll see how that works out.

I'm sure the rat is unhappy about the trap menu, but our guava tree is probably supporting a whole family of those critters.
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Old 01-06-2013, 12:27 AM   #52
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I should retitle this thread to "Feral cat noise: the never-ending saga".
You DO realize that a certain, probably hefty percentage of us who are avidly reading this saga are thinking, "Thank Heaven I am not dealing with that! My life may not be perfect, but at least there are no feral cats yowling around my house!"

I have neither seen nor heard a cat in my neighborhood since about a month ago, late at night, when one jumped from the fence towards my roof and missed, hitting my side door very, very hard. To me he sounded like a thug trying to break my door down. Scared me to death, and him too.. He looked kind of dazed and then regained his cool and wandered off into the night. He is not feral, though, and I know who his owners are.
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Old 01-06-2013, 02:13 AM   #53
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Why don't you give the trapped cats a tour of the bottom of the lagoon?

How about bringing a coyote onto the property? Oh, yeah--maybe there ain't any in HI.
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Old 01-06-2013, 05:31 PM   #54
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How about bringing a coyote onto the property? Oh, yeah--maybe there ain't any in HI.
I am sure many of us could send him some.

I think that by this point I would be on backyard safari with a flashlight and .22. I like animals, but there are limits. And having watched the evolution of a feral cat colony aided and abetted by unrepentant feeders, it will never end simply with trapping and spay/neuter.
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Old 01-07-2013, 01:19 PM   #55
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Why don't you give the trapped cats a tour of the bottom of the lagoon?
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I think that by this point I would be on backyard safari with a flashlight and .22. I like animals, but there are limits. And having watched the evolution of a feral cat colony aided and abetted by unrepentant feeders, it will never end simply with trapping and spay/neuter.
We're capable of executing (so to speak) both of those options, and we've discussed them, but their risks of unintended consequences are judged to be worse than the putative rewards. I'm fine with a firearm (or even a bow) once I've regained my proficiency, but I'd have a heck of a challenge getting a clear sight line and making sure that the ammunition stayed in the target.

In our neighborhood I'd need a silencer, too... I still mean for the cats, not the landlord.

We'll win these battles one at a time, and eventually the cat-feeding landlord will realize that all their beneficiaries have been driven to left for greener pastures. Literally.

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How about bringing a coyote onto the property? Oh, yeah--maybe there ain't any in HI.
Mongoose!
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Old 01-07-2013, 01:29 PM   #56
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Feral cats can be a real pain. Back in 2010, we had to get rid of three separate litters of kittens, all within a few weeks. The first was a black cat with four kittens that I saw in my Grandmother's back yard, across the street from me. The mother took off running, but the kittens were so small they could barely move. Their eyes were still blue, and they were wobbly. I was able to get all four of them in a box, and take them to the SPCA, which found homes for all four of them.

Then, there was a mother car with four kittens roaming around at my next door neighbor's. The mother cat was nice, and could be picked up, but the kittens were pretty wild. Unfortunately, that batch all went to animal control, courtesy of a trap they provided. Shame that the mother cat was taken, as she was very friendly, but there are just simply too many cats and not enough homes. Oh, they also caught the black mother cat.

The next cat dropped her load of five kittens in the shed behind my house. This one, fortunately, we were able to find homes for all of them, plus the mother.

Unfortunately, I've seen at least four different cats running around again. I just hope we don't end up going through that kitten fiasco again!

Oh, and a few months ago, my roommate went to get into the truck to drive it to work. I had left the back window open a few inches, and a kitten had gotten in! He set it outside, but it went and hopped up into the bed, and back through the window before he had a chance to slide it shut! So, he took it out again, took it back behind the garage, and let it go.

I gotta learn to keep that back window shut. One day, a snake had gotten in, and he didn't realize it until he was about a mile or two down the road!
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Old 01-07-2013, 01:37 PM   #57
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Snakes in a plane truck? Ew!
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Old 01-07-2013, 03:03 PM   #58
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Instead of driving the cat back to the lenient feline juvie court, we drove it six miles to a secure undisclosed location neighborhood by a farm. We opened the cage door and the Boots headed straight for the barn. I hope it's happy. I mean the cat, not the barn.
I respectfully disagree with this Nords. People have dropped cats off in our area in the past since it's a rural enclave in a very urban area. Not appreciated by DH and I or the dropped off cats I suspect.
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Old 01-07-2013, 03:24 PM   #59
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I respectfully disagree with this Nords. People have dropped cats off in our area in the past since it's a rural enclave in a very urban area. Not appreciated by DH and I or the dropped off cats I suspect.
So what is the way to manage the problem? Moving them elsewhere transfers the problem to someone else and may not work, trap and spay/neuter does not work, there are no local predators to control the population, and exterminationis frowned on.
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Old 01-07-2013, 03:28 PM   #60
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I know that Purron is a true animal advocate, and she, like me, shares Nords' frustration along with a sadness for the human landlord-caused problem that Nords is experiencing.

I'll tell you what I would do in the situation, but it isn't easy to do: I'd take adult, unadoptable animals to my vet for humane euthanasia. I don't advocate any kind of cruelty (and Ed, I know you didn't mean that quite the way it sounded) or feeding one animal to another, but that is honestly what I've done with animals I've found dumped in our rural area that I've been unable to rehome reasonably.

It is a hard thing to do, though, and you have to carry the problem around with you, but to me, it is the best of a lot of hard choices. Far better for an animal to have a good end, peacefully provided, than the alternatives.

As in most things, YMMV.
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