Wednesday, August 22, 2012

On Cats, Gophers and Fairy Wings

Snakes are all and good on a farm, but kitties are so much more cuddly and, I'm told, can make great rodent repellent if not deterrent. To that end, we've adopted three kitties whose jobs it will be to live outside and keep away the pests.

I'm a big fan of animal shelters and adopting pets there, but these kittens were found even more locally; an unwanted litter nearby. We were initially going to take the full litter (five), but when we arrived for pickup, the owner couldn't part with them all. She kept two tortoise shells for herself, and sent us off with a grey, a tabby and a tortoiseshell.

So far, the growing kittens have nearly mastered bug catching and the related fine art of bug eating: peel off the bothersome wings, tear off the crunch little legs, snake on the head, then feast on the abdomen. So very nice of them to leave the wings behind for us to find like some sort of fairy Armageddon.

This spring I had my own first-hair-critter kill with the trapping of gophers that had been plaguing the garden. I tossed the first one (in June) out to Blue, the grey kitty. He had a field day with the carcass before finally settling on leaving it to the birds. More recently, the kitties have discovered that dead gopher tastes pretty good. All they leave behind are the teeth.

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