The Apprentice Hunter

Much as I love watching Not Cat exploring the garden and climbing the trees, I am increasingly aware that this is all preparation for successful hunting. He has at least two hides now where he can crouch concealed among leaves to watch for birds. He alerts me to the presence of the wrens and blue tits by his obvious interest. The blackbirds alert me to his whereabouts. He’s fast and light and determined. A friend with two killer cats reckons he is studying. I do hope she’s wrong. I never saw Cat catch a bird. He was interested, and would sit hopefully for hours beneath the bluetits’ nests, which is how we knew where they were, but I only saw him catch mice and moths.
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Feline Mission

Not Cat is on a mission.

He’s trotting about the garden looking important. Every now and then he stares hard at some vegetation and pounces. The grasshoppers were having a bad time this morning, At one point he rushed indoors and there was a lot of clucking from next door. My guess is he’d been investigating the chickens. I’m not sure which species he’s hunting tonight.



No other cats about this evening. Last night they all came trotting by. Cat would have rolled up his sleeves and had a barny. Not Cat isn’t sure whether to run or make friends. When I walk up behind him, the other cats flee. Not Cat, mistaking this for evidence of his own power, races after them then struts back to me looking pleased with himself. Continue reading

Out of Retirement

So there I was last night commenting a trifle smugly on Sophie Scott’s blog about her hunting kittens. Cat, I was thinking, being an elderly boy, and never one for catching the birds, had hung up his Mighty Hunter vest with its myriad pockets and faux macho bravado, and opted for the quieter life.

I should have reflected a little more on his reaction to the rediscovery of the clockwork beetle toy the other day. He chased it up and down the stairs and along the landing. It would have been dead several times over had it been alive in the first place. He generously batted it across to me a few times so I could enjoy the fun too.

I was really a bit chuffed that his inner kitten made such a prolonged appearance. I hadn’t bargained on it reviving an interest in former pastimes.

So bathed and pyjamaed and ready for bed, I went out to get him in from his garden mooch. He was very lively. Springing about in the summer night. He didn’t seem too keen to come in. Then he pounced on something and the penny dropped. He’d got a mouse. It was still alive and he was enjoying carrying it around and apparently  showing it the different parts of the garden.

Actually, I think maybe he was wondering where to dispatch it. He knows from previous experience that I draw the line  at him bringing his prey through the front door. So it looked like we could be in the garden for some time.

Cat dropped the mouse a couple of times and quickly grabbed it again. Then he dropped it once more, and the mouse, who might want to consider trying out for the England team, shot behind him and disappeared under my car. Cat was looking wildly in quite the wrong direction. He didn’t give up easily, but after a few minutes I could see his heart wasn’t in it anymore, so I picked him up. Inside, he contented himself by giving a few threatening sniffs in a couple of corners of the flat, then laid down his gun and allowed me to give him his supper.