For how it all started, click here
For the first week’s report, please click this link.
For the first Month, click here – month 1 (actually, more like week 2-4)
This starts the log of the second and third months of the feral kitties, January and February 2017
January 2, it has been 1 month and a day for Lacey Girl Kitty Thomasina and 3 weeks for Blue Boy Thomas. They were both inside their bankers box cave in the morning…took feed from a spoon. While I was letting the chickens out and feeding them, they BOTH ventured out into the feed storage room. I heard both their voices. They answered when Socks, the stray came by and called me. Socks promptly disappeared fro the day. Neither one are overly scared, but I do not make any sudden moves. I was able to approach them with feed-spoon and Kitteee sound. Blue Boy is very active, including climbing the hardware cloth fence and I think he would like to get out.
The cats were looking at the chickens and vice versa. They can see each other through the fence and will have plenty of time to get used to each other.
I had not brought my camera as I didn’t expect such activities.
Plan is to leave them free in the feed storage for 2-4 weeks, depending on how they do and how quickly I can finalize the main coop area they will gain access to next.
January 6, 2017
I sure hope you are ready for some feral Kitty pics…because here are some…🙂 – so far they are only allowed free inside the feed storage room, with chicken view, but they cannot get to each other – lots of time to get used to all the commotion in the chicken run.
January 9, 2017
oh dear…this afternoon, girl feral kitty seemed to have disappeared. they were in their afternoon :”i am napping phase” and didn’t come out…so i looked….(had to get a flashlight) …ONLY Blue boy in the cave….the other house (there is a larger animals house on top of the big dog crate) looked empty too …i looked in all the places and behind all the things in the feed storage room…no girl. this can’t be, there is NO way she can get out….so finally i check UNDER the pet bed in the house…and there she was curled up between the pillow and the pet bed….i am not sure why she moved there, only that blue boy looked awfully big in the cave.
January 11, 2017
very short video this morning
and Touchdown in the afternoon
so the last 2 days i noticed the feral kitties were rubbing each other when it came to eat from the spoon, even trying to rub against the spoon, which is messy as it put cat food onto their fur….and this evening, they came even closer and Blue Boy wanted to be petted… 🙂 you know how cats rub against your legs, tail up…even purring…girl to, though not quite so….and i ended up petting them, boy mostly…so soft…and he came back for more….the short kitty video on the post below is from this morning
Since that day, they have been more and more coming out when called and into being stroked/petted. Blue Boy could be picked up and last evening, the girl to was quite happy to be petted.
I opened the little door between the feed storage room and the chicken run for the last 3 or 4 nights and they were back in they respective caves each morning…
Until this morning, January 18 –THEY WERE NOT THERE.
I have no idea how they got out…but they didn’t get back in…
not in their cave, not the feed storage room, nowhere in the chicken run.
Not the release I had planned.
The good part: Rather then 2-4 weeks as recommended everywhere, they had a total of 5 and 6 weeks respectively to get adjusted, they are neutered, there are a lot of hiding places around the coop. There have been well fed and looked healthy. The release didn’t go quite as I had intended, as I was not able to teach them the cat doors…and then let them out while i was around during a sunny day!!!
Reassuringly, sometimes newly released ferals stay away for 2 or 3 days only to appear again…I hope so.
Update: posted March 7, 2017 for month 2-3 (January & February)
It took several days after their escape for them to be seen in the feed storage again, but the food was gone each morning.
By the end of February (definitely Boy by February 19), they both had learned to use the cat doors and I stopped propping them open towards the end of February. By then, Blue Boy had started coming around in the afternoons as well as the mornings. Kitty girl almost always shows up 1-2 hours later than Blue boy in the afternoons, only comes half as many times in the mornings. During bad weather/rain, I don’t see them at all. This first happened February 17…no sighting of either of them all day…rainy, stormy day and I was worried. During good weather, the now often both come in the mornings too. It seems weather is influencing quite a bit how much they come out…as well as how hungry they are.
Mornings (I suppose they learned from me calling the cows on my way to feed the chickens) and late afternoons seem to be the times they look for food. The girl has remained quite shy, much more so than her brother, who I can pick up and he purrs on my lap, though he too still prefers to jump off rather soon. I still freak out when one of them (usually the girl) does not show up at all one day….wondering if a raccoon got to them.
Blue boy is much bigger than his sister.
In the late afternoons after eating, they stay out for a while, sometimes start to play a little, follow me around in the garden or into the chicken coops, especially the boy. Eventually, I will leave the doors to the coops open for them to hunt any rodents that might still be hiding in there.
And how is it going with the chickens? Pretty well I would say. They got used to each other, the chickens might still make some low alarm noises, though the kitties are still the more cautious ones, and if the feed storage is open and a chicken wants to eat the cat food and starts getting close, as in 4 – 6 feet, to the feed dish…they make way. As a result, the people door is kept closed at all times now and so far the chickens have not figured out how to get through the closed cat doors.
How is it going with the other (stray) cats? : seems to be going well. Socks is about twice as big and they respect that, but I have seem them all 3 be in the feed storage at the same time.
What are they being fed: the 2 feral and the by now 2 strays coming by share 2 cans of wet food/day. if the strays don’t show up, the feral get the wet. Then there is almost a cup of dry for each of them too….however, they don’t finish it all by the time I go up to the house, and I am not sure if the strays end up eating it or even the raccoons.
I probably will cut down on the food once it gets warmer as they won’t need to spend calories to maintain they temperature.
It appears that Blue Boy does hang around the coops in plain sight. Time for some photos soon. When the girls stays around, she is usually hiding under the bamboo or other things and is not immediately visible. I have not looked for and don’t know where their safe spot is, but they must like it and when it rains, they don’t come out ……unless very hungry.
They don’t appear to ever stay overnight in the feed storage to sleep….despite the cat beds and heating blanket. I will keep them for next winter, but if they still never use it…then the cat beds go to storage.