Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Cats Entertain Wildlife

Teasel stalks along the fence of the cat yard, intent on the progress of an insect.

Quickly, everyone!  Circle it!

The mole goes to earth in a clump of weeds while Teasel, Charlie and Mima are poised for it to pop back out.

The toad managed to escape unscathed from the attentions of the felines who were poking wary paws at it.

The toad, I believe is a female of the Eastern American Toad species.
The females are larger than the males and this is a big toad!

The house cats enjoy their little yard tremendously.
Every insect who zings by, bounces or crawls through the grass, each dragonfly or bird winging through the air is entertainment and interest for the cats.
Watching them I am reminded of films I've seen of their big cat cousins prowling the Serengeti.
We saw them yesterday morning as we finished breakfast--forking about in the drift of leaves that have already fallen from the maple that shades the yard.
Ever mindful of the possibility of a snake, I asked J. to investigate what creature had the cats so enthralled.
He announced the presence of the toad and shooed the cats away from it, where-upon it hopped through the fence.  I went out with the camera and hunkered down in front of Mrs. Toad.  She obliged by hop-bopping closer.  Wanting a slightly different angle for another photo I shifted slightly, causing the leaves to rustle.
I was amazed when the toad bounced closer and emitted a sound, "Phhttt!" Sort of a combination of a hiss and a spit. I left her to her own devices and turned to see the cats now intent on a mole who was humping about the yard.  The resident moles have been very busy.  The ground under the clothesline is spongey from their burrowings and heavings.
They have created  tunnels that cross the cat yard and have several times become an object of interest to be poked at.
Mima picked the mole up in her mouth and promptly spat it out. Cats seem to know that moles are indigestable.
I'm pleased to accomodate the resident toads--the moles are another matter!


  1. We sat and watched a mole hill appearing before our very eyes once, it was fascinating. Being townies it was a sight we don't often get to witness.
    I love the outdoor run for the indoor cats, so nice for them to get out.
    Ours have access to outside all of the time via the cat flap, this is closed at dusk and not opened until morning light.
    Although they are free to roam far and wide they never seem to go out of ear shot, probably because I kept them inside for a long time when they were young before letting them out.
    I was thinking how most of your cats are light in colour and most of the cats that have shared our lives have been black or black and white (not counting kitty of course). That's just the way it happened.

  2. Aren't our animals entertaining!

    I can inagine your little cat family investigating items of interest. You could just sit and watch for hours.

    R pounces like a cat when she sees/hears a rustle in the grass, but hasnt grasped the concept of "it's gone" and will peer for ages at the empty spot.

  3. Love to watch cats hunting, ours is always on the trail, indoors or out.

  4. I love watching animals stalk ...it really shows up their natural instincts ... our house cats chase and stalk moths ... in a pack ...so funny as they usually all miss it.lol I think your house cat run is a brilliant idea.
    I totally understand that you are so busy and dont always have time to comment but I am glad to know that you have time to drop by and have a read. take care and dont work too hard xx

  5. when our 6 outside cats gather around in a circle we say they are having a board meeting! we had lots of moles when we first moved here 13 years ago---now, not so many as the cats have been busy doing their thing. my dentist got a cat to live at his office to combat his mole problem that was destroying his lawn. love the cat run as it gives the cats such pleasure.

  6. Great photos of your inquisitive cats and their yard guests.

    My Lucy Kitten has gone off hunting this evening and I hope she will come in soon as I want to go to bed!