Cute little kitten
About four months ago a feral cat that befriended us when we first moved into the house gave birth to yet another litter. This one was the biggest one yet - nine kittens in all (see them in the first picture taken by my sister, on her visit Tuesday, June 16, 2009). I have no idea what happened to kittens from all her previous litters - they all just disappear after a while.
The current litter, however, is still with us, full force. This time the cat gave birth in the chicken/green house and the kittens continue to call it their home. About a month ago the cat left (she does that occasionally) leaving all the kittens to fend for themselves.
As I see them struggling to procure sufficient food supplies on their own, I occasionally supplement their diet with reconstituted powdered milk and cottontail rabbits that are too big for them to hunt down on their own. Phooey to the authoritative source claiming that cats are all lactose intolerant - that's all bull crap. These kittens occasionally get diarrhea, but it is in no way correlated to their intake of milk.
When I tell people that cats are natural enemies of the rabbits, people just shake their heads in disbelief, but it is absolutely true. While domesticated cats are omnivorous, they prefer and need meat to stay healthy. In addition, they are very opportunistic and will go for whatever meat they can get their little paws on. If they get hungry enough and the only meat they find is their dead human owner, they will eat it, too.
When our feral kittens get done with the rabbit carcass, all that remains are the rear legs and the backbone, perhaps the lower jaw. All the rest of the soft tissue and smaller bones they consume completely. In the second picture (taken yesterday afternoon - Tuesday, July 28, 2009), one of the kittens (it's the one with the tail turned towards the camera in the middle of the first picture) is gnawing on the cottontail's head.