Feral Cats Fight Back
Ginger feral tom cat - Photo by JaguarJulie (Flickr)
Yes folks, it has finally happened. The ever defensive, downtrodden, dirty, diseased and accepting feral cat is in revolt. No longer are they scampering away down dark alleys or under undergrowth in fear of the animal control officer who has come to "euthanise" them.
A canny colony of feral cats in the White Mountain area of Arizona, native American country, have evolved over the centuries from the time when pilgrims first introduced the domestic cat to the American continent.
They have learned the ways of modern animal control. They know they are abandoned and persecuted. They see no way forward other than to fight back.
The leader is a stocky, unneutered ginger tom. Ginger cats are born leaders. They are calm alpha males able to dominate and think straight under fire.
With a core of like minded alpha cats, two of which are females please note (this is a society without even the merest hint of sexism) they devised a cunning plan to get their man..!
"Mr. Twolegs", as they called the animal control officer, routinely came to the woods over a dry creek to lay traps.
He had to traverse a rickety wooden bridge either side of which at the beginning of the crossing were two hoptrees, small spindly, bush-like trees, growing out of the rocky ground above the arid banks of this barren creek.
One of the cats, the large female was a domestic cat turned feral. She was a handsome specimen of pure calico glory.
She had brought with her a cat toy. It was made up of string and a mouse.
They had been playing near the hoptrees and as if by design rather than accident the string had become strung....between the two trees.
The fateful day arrived. Twolegs, as confident as ever in what he was doing - the slaughter of feral cats, while preserving other wildlife - jauntily headed towards the footbridge carrying two heavy traps and bait. He was sweaty and cussing at the burden of working in the hot Arizona sun.
The inevitable happened. He tripped on the trap inadvertently set by the feral cats and crashed into the creek.
It was a healthy drop of 25 feet.
That night Ginger, Mr Alpha cat gathered his colony around him and they ate the bait that Twolegs had brought relaxed in the knowledge that they were safe until his replacement arrived.