It was weird...for a while after we (meaning me, Matt, and his parents) got three pairs of cats Trap-Neuter-Returned, it seemed like every cat we saw was already eartipped (meaning they were someone who'd already had their trip to the clinic). Thus, we've been holding off making appointments pending the stragglers coming out of wherever they've been hiding.
That said, it looks like we're going to be starting up the trapping again real soon. There are at least three unspayed females still at large, and from what I can tell, two of them recently had litters. Current calculations estimate a minimum of seven new kittens in the neighborhood.
Here is one of the newbies I managed to catch on camera the other day:
This little guy/girl (haven't been able to get close enough to determine which yet) is one of a litter of four. Two solid grey, two brown and black tabbies.
Here is a closeup of Grey Kitten #1 munching on a quail leg. No, s/he didn't catch the quail -- I very boringly got it at the supermarket. (Getting feral kittens to the point where they will even come near enough to the traps to venture inside can be a task in itself, so I figured I'd bring them a bit of quail as a friendship offering. They were, needless to say, enthused.)
The next picture actually has three cats in it, though the one in back (Grey Kitten #2) is sort of hard to see. Grey Kitten #1 is still munching away at the quail leg in the foreground, while adolescent kittygirl Dominique watches with great interest (she already finished her quail leg, and was probably wondering if the little guys were going to drop any leftovers!).
...and finally we have some actual clear pictures of Radar, who is my current number-one suspected baby-daddy to the little grey newbies (the resemblance is quite apparent).
Genealogically speaking, Radar is the son of Coal, elder brother of Cora, Brodie, and Shadow, and littermate of Suzie. Unfortunately we've not yet managed to catch him for neutering, and he's managed to become one of the current reigning toms. Whilst quite dashing and popular with the ladies, Radar is generally too shy around humans to even come out during daylight hours. I'm guessing the only reason he was out and about when this picture was taken was because, with kittens recently weaned, one or more of the local momcats has come back into heat. :/
Above, Radar is mildly startled to find a camera pointed at him. I thought he would run away, but he didn't this time.
...but as this last picture shows, he probably didn't run because, well, Buddy (another local boycat) had been dragging around a catnip-filled sock. From the looks of it, Radar found some residue from this on the concrete, because he spent several minutes rolling around and drooling and looking altogether, well, catnipped. (Which has me wondering if maybe putting catnip in/near the TNR traps might increase our catch rate! Anyone know whether this has been tried?)