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Method to the Quintuple Madness

I decided to get up when the chirp chirp chirp woke me up at 4:30am. At least? I identified it. It's a catbird. It was chirping from the front porch roof. Catbirds are loud, since I had the AC on, 2 noisy fans and my sound machine. Wasn't singing just doing their chirp. The determining factor in getting up was that my back still hurts, so by the time I get back from my errands I will not have THAT much energy to do much outside which would aggravate my back more. Method to the madness, sometimes.

While typing up my first post last night I heard the scampering of raccoons in the locust tree. After I typed up my second post and shut down the puter for the night, I went out with the flashlight and camera to see who, what, where. Maddeningly when it's dark and I take pix with flash it takes about 10 seconds before the photo takes. When I first shown the flashlight up the tree FIVE pairs of eyes were staring back at me, all on the same branch! By the time the photo took, one had went up the tree a bit.

Momma and four chirruns (so I first thought). Now, at the time I thought it was the momma and chirruns I've been dealing with and that mother raccoons were like feral cats who kept one kitten back from where she has the other kittens. But studying the photos this morning, no, this is a different momma raccoon as the chirruns are smaller and their tails longer.

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Another discovery this morning while looking at the photos, there were FIVE chirruns!!!! Momma is the second from the right, if that wasn't obvious.

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Uh, time to back away and go in since they're coming down the tree! I like how the two look in the trunk crease.

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This IS the season for mother raccoons to start taking the kids around. Quite common in the city; but it still boggles me as I still associate raccoons with less populated areas.

THEY are still calling for storms later this afternoon and have now also added Wednesday for strong storms. Fuck-a-doodle-do.

Comments

( 3 Peaces spoken — Speak your peace )
tilia_tomentosa
Jun. 23rd, 2016 12:12 am (UTC)
Raccoons are such an exotic foreign thing to me. :)

Why would feral cats do that?
misstia
Jun. 24th, 2016 12:26 am (UTC)
I wish the raccoons were an exotic foreign thing to me!! :)

Well, this is my own thinking on why feral cats do that, having observed dozens of feral kitty moms do this and they vet didn't know (they don't really study behavior). I think they keep one with them at all times in case something happens to the others. Then they still have one surviving kitten. Now, my kitty Martha was NOT feral, but she was dumped in the trailer park I was living at as a pregnant unwed mother. She had her kittens while I was in the hospital and neighbors fed her for me. When I was up to it, I started to make friends with her 2 kittens to be able to get them homes (HAH! Ended up being mine!). Martha always had 2 kittens out in the yard with her. One day I got a glimpse of a THIRD kitten peeking out from where they slept. WHAT?! So Martha wasn't feral but she did it too. Must be some kind of instinct?

Same with other cats--true ferals--that I observed. You'd see like 3 or 4 kittens with the mom, then suddenly you'd see one you hadn't seen before. Mother cats will take her kittens out when they're able to walk to start leading them to the food source, show them how to hunt/get their own food, etc. But one will always be kept back!! Mother cats will also leave the kittens (minus the one) in what they think is a safe spot. They give verbal commands that basically mean 'stay' and when the mom comes back she gives a different verbal command, that i think is 'all clear' cuz they'll come running out to her. There was kittens in my front yard under the honeysuckle a few years ago and I once mimicked the mom's sound and they all came running out. They saw me, looked for their mom, then ran back!
tilia_tomentosa
Jun. 27th, 2016 12:29 am (UTC)
I've never seen village cats or our neighborhood cats do that. Not that I've watched real ferals.
( 3 Peaces spoken — Speak your peace )

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