Thursday, May 31, 2012

Maybe its a Siamese!! (fox)

Something about this fox family is very interesting.  The little guy on the left has black points: feet, legs and ears.  In the middle, we have one with a little bit of black on its feet and ears.  On the right is a fox that is blond, with no black points at all.  Someone somewhere knows about red fox color patterns, but

it sure isn't us.  Until now, we thought they were all the same!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

.....and don't have any cats for lunch!!

You are looking at one of three little foxes living in the yard at Fox Farm with their mother.  We thought there were only two kits, but three were out playing today. In 2010, a family of five, four kits and a vixen lived under a building for a couple months.   This mother might be the one we called Chicken Fox back when she was a baby.

Foxes are great at controlling mice and gophers around the farm, but they also like partridge, pheasants and grouse.

Welcome home, Fox family. 

Eat all the rodents you want, but take it easy on the birds, please..... 

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Now you see you don't!!

You wouldn't believe how much work it is babysitting one Ghost Kitty.  Poor Socks is totally worn out!  The worst thing about Ghost Kitties is that they disappear at the drop of a hat.  Sometimes they're right in front of your nose, and you still can't find them.  Socks thinks he left the painful little retch in the shop.

Don't look now, Socks, but there's a Ghost Kitty right behind you!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Babysitting should be fun!

In order to keep Socks away from the Nissan, so we could go to town, he was sent to the shop.

He found the nice, comfy saddle blanket he loves so much and seemed quite happy until we said:

"How about you babysit the youngest ghost kitty for a while."

His eyes tell the rest of the story.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

He just thinks its his!

The other day, we were driving down the driveway when someone yelled -

"Hey!!  There's a cat on the roof of your truck!"

We stopped, turned around and drove back to the shop, and there he was.  He jumped onto the hood and looked in the window.   He gets a little grumpy when someone drives his Nissan.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Is that cat contagious?

Sitting on the peak of a doghouse roof can't be real comfortable, but Tipster seems to like it.

He's been a little under the weather lately, what with the sniffles and all. 

Guess we'd better find him a shot of penicillin before all of the cats catch it.

Sure hope he doesn't give it to the babies. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

One is too many....

Magpie (bad black and white bird)

Dive bombing people who enter Barn Cat Mansion, eating dog food and stealing kittens is all this squawky bird is good for.

Cats eat birds, but they don't eat magpies. 

The only birds noisier than magpies are ravens and crows.  Magpies nest in our yard and the eggs are about to hatch and that means more magpies.

There must be something good to say about magpies......just can't think of anything!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Foiled again!

Stop the truck!  Grab the camera!  Take off the lens cap and turn it on!  Oops, turn the display so you can see what you're taking a picture of.


VOILA!  By the time you do all of this, your subject is running away!
Elk running away from the shooter.......again!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The life of Riley.....

Sunshine, green grass, and a mouse hiding in the firewood;  life just couldn't be any better for

Tiny Orange Tom.

"Happy go lucky" best describes this quiet little tom cat.  While Pinkerton and Casper scrap about everything from "soup to nuts", TOT enjoys life the way a Barn Cat Mansion cat should. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Horse Whisperer...

Last weekend, we forgot about cats for a while and concentrated on training some colts.  This was the scene Saturday morning at Sid Cook's Colt Starting Clinic.  About 23 riders learned the concept of training to create a partnership between horse and rider.
Calm, assertive energy

is key and it helps also to have patience. 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Totally bizarre!!

We all know Tipster.  He's the only one who survived the magpie attack on H"C"S's kittens last year.  He was also the youngest cat in Barn Cat Mansion until H"C"S had her 2012 litter.

Well, you'll never believe what's happening now.

Tipster has moved into the Cat Carrier with his mother and small siblings.  We were horrified to see him there because he might have squished the poor little things or, worse yet, drank all their milk.

Amazingly, everyone seems fine, but we'll keep a close eye on the situation.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Cold feet......

Sneaking up on these kittens is easy.  NOT picking them up is difficult.  Taking a picture is

downright dangerous.

If H"C"S decides to move this family, we may not see them for a month.  Generally the new home is somewhere inaccessible to humans, like way waaaayyyy under the grain bin.  Look at that cute little foot sticking out of the bed!!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Kaleidoscope Kat!

Fans of Pinkerton were right.  He will have trouble blending in with the green grass.  His only hope is to mesmerize predators with fancy stripes and piercing greenish-yellowish eyes.

Look at those stripes long enough and your eyes will make you think

your head is spinning...

Friday, May 18, 2012

Moving day......

Today, this mother fox sat quietly for the camera, before running off to finish packing up the family. 

She moved the whole kit and caboodle to Fox Farm

We don't know which neighborhood they left behind, but we'll roll out the welcome mat because its so much fun when foxes live in the yard.  Nothing is more entertaining on a cool summer night than to watch little foxes play and fight. Surprisingly enough, foxes are sort of bold when they're young! :)
Hopefully, we can follow their antics over the next few months.........stay tuned.....

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Migration interrupted!!

Swallows and bluebirds have a trim physique and can fit into the same house but we all know what will happen if this guy tries to move into a bluebird house.

He simply won't fit!!

Sitting on a fence post, not far from the newest birdhouse was a Common Snipe.  Now, we don't know much about birds but we do know this:  Snipes generally like marshy wetlands where they can use that long beak for picking grubs and such out of mud and water.

He must be lost......that's all we can say.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Birds of a feather....

Barn Cat Mansion is located 12 miles from town and 9 of those miles are gravel road.  Along our gravel road, a man we call Bird House Man has placed numerous bluebird houses.  He expected only bluebirds to inhabit these neat little boxes, but lo and behold, swallows keep taking over.  Now he places two houses at each station, hoping that there will be room for everyone.

This is a brand spanking new home, and look who's trying to move in. Its a creepy little

cliff swallow

that could easily build a mud house for itself.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

....and back to front!

After reading the Barn Cat Mansion Rule Book from front to back and top to bottom, we found an obscure rule regarding photos, in very small print.
Read Rules 1 to 99 carefully, then proceed as follows:
Kittens:  Rule 100
If Mother Cat has left kittens for more that 2 minutes, carefully point the camera in their direction, snap the picture and back away as fast as
possible.  Only photograph kittens if you absolutely need the picture!

Never leave your scent on anything close to kittens or they will be moved immediately!

Monday, May 14, 2012

A rule to live by....

Mother's Day at the Mansion was more than just another day.  It was a Special Event Day!!

H"C"S gave birth to 3 homely kittens.

with faces only a mother could love.   And believe us - she DOES love them!!

Barn Cat Mansion Rule Book, under
Kittens: Rule 1
Never touch newborn kittens.  If you do, they will be moved  immediately. 
We always try to follow the rules, so.....we're not touching them....!!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Friends, again.....

Mending fences is not easy, but finally the boys called a truce.  TOT vowed not to tell everyone about Pinkerton and Pinkerton promised to stop being a bully.
There are things to do around the Mansion these days, but fighting isn't one of them. 
At supper time the other night, Homer "Chelsea" Simpson was heard rearranging straw in the cat carrier.  Now this is news!!

Something is about to happen that will make this fight seem a tad trivial!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Time out!

Pinkerton took a "time out" to regroup and think about this problem.  He seems to be a little "on tilt" these days, but maybe he's just a

typical teenager.

If Bumble finds out he was beat up by a girl, it will scar him for life.  On the other hand, being a bully isn't all its cracked up to be!

The easiest way out is to give in to TOT and let him have a few extra Temptations.

"Hey TOT!  Maybe we can make a deal!"

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

What's the big deal??

Big Kitty believes in letting the youngsters sort things out for themselves.  Wasting energy on trivial matters just doesn't sit well with him.  In the big scheme of things, who really cares if Pinkerton got beat up.  There wasn't any blood. Nobody went to the hospital and

life goes on.

He sure wishes someone would tell him who Pinkerton was fighting with, though.  He'd walk right up and give that tom cat a shake of the paw.

Sorry Big Kitty, it wasn't a "tom"!!! ;)

Monday, May 7, 2012

A watchful eye...

Queen of Barn Cat Mansion....

what more can you say about this beautiful matronly cat?  Orangey Tail keeps peace among youngsters as any mother will do.  But this time its different.  Pinkerton is a Ghost Kitty, imported from the Fox Farm.  He's not one of the family.
She has tried her best to accept this rebel cat.  He causes trouble, but usually in an entertaining way.
This time, he's about to step over the line!!  Hopefully, Orangey Tail can find it in her heart to forgive him.

Sunday, May 6, 2012


"Calm down, Pinkerton!!  Stop biting my arm!!   You can make matters worse by terrorizing me, or, let me eat all of your Temptations for the next 5 days and I'll stay quiet!!"

That was how TOT tried to handle (defeated) Hillside Warrior.

On the other hand...

Pinkerton had a different idea.

"Get down here, you snivelling little orange cat.  Never, ever tell anyone about that battle.  I'll bite your arm and pull you down to the ground!!  I'll be your worst nightmare.


Saturday, May 5, 2012

Totally embarrassed......

Unbelievable!!  Pinkerton was taken down by a


He quickly looked around and was pretty sure no one had seen the battle. 


TOT had witnessed the whole sordid affair!  Finally, a chink in the armor of the self proclaimed Hillside Warrior.

Was TOT going to use this to his advantage?


Friday, May 4, 2012


Wrestlecatmania resumed as a match between Smoke and Pinkerton.  After launching herself in Hillside Warrior's direction, she grabbed on to his shoulder for dear life.

Pinkerton held his ground, but

due to shear force from Smoke's flying body, he fell over backwards.  That's when the great welter weight was defeated by a "girlie" feather weight.  

Wait until the boys hear about this one! hahaha 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Can't anyone get any sleep???

Socks is somewhat perturbed.  Check out the beautiful wool blanket beneath his feet.  Nothing could be more relaxing than to stretch out on this luxurious blanket with the sun shining in, warming his body from head to tail.

So why does he look so angry?

It just so happens that this is a saddle blanket.  Beneath this woolen masterpiece is a saddle.  In a few minutes, we're hoping to have a horse underneath both of them.
Too bad, Socks!  Find somewhere else to sleep or

grab some boots, 

because we're going riding.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Don't look now,,,,,

Blue uses a specific strategy when chasing

"Cat Wolf". 

Notice his nose is pointed slightly away but he's running in a line that takes him closer.  This allows him to intercept the coyote while being non-confrontational.  The coyote is running straight but looking at Blue over his shoulder.  When Blue gets too close, Cat Wolf stops, sits for a second, then runs right at Blue.  Blue retreats, barks for a while, then they start all over.

Just keep fighting back, Blue!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


As the sun sinks low in the western sky, Casper sits quietly watching. 
He watches as horses meander off for an evening of grazing on the smallest of green grasslets poking through the soft spring dirt. 
He watches Chick and Blue, resting in the Mansion, crunching up the dog treats.
He watches TOT, Pinkerton and Tipster chase feathers, dust and anything else that flies through the peaceful night air.

Most carefully, though, he watches the

Big Kitty, King of the Mansion.

He's watching to see when Bumble Butt will welcome him home.......back to Barn Cat Mansion.