While waiting for Steffi to finish her backyard business this morning, I thought I would take a quick peek out the back door. The sleet had just started and the salt I had put on the steps yesterday was not as effective as it had been. Only when I moved the photos to the computer did I spy the tracks. I immediately thought of Betty’s recent post on tracks in the snow. Econotes at the Cofrin Center for Biodiversity shows a photograph of domestic cat tracks in the snow that appear to be ‘single file’, i.e., Betty’s one-legged unknown critter. I also located a site that said cats walking in snow tend to place the back feet in the same spot as the front feet. This seeming single track is the way Johnny Winter (the cat that wandered up one day and will not leave) goes from his sleeping shelter to the place where I feed him. Normally, he is on the top step meowing when I let Steffi out, but apparently since the sleet is falling heavily now, he opted to wait for me to show first.
The second set of tracks, faintly visible in front of the car are probably his steps leading toward the woods behind the cars. He has his own shelter box, but it has been my observation that the stray cats who show up tend to have hiding burrows in the various spots around where leaves falling on limbs tend to create burrows. The girls (Beyonce, Dilute, and Scruffy) all wisely stay on the front porch in the shelter boxes with fur bedding, generally all 3 in the same bed curled up. Tonight when the temp drops to between 1 and 5, I will bring them in to the heated laundry room off the screened porch.
The bottom two photographs are from yesterday, when the light dusting occurred. The back steps are now completely iced over–I fed the cats this morning by opening the front door onto the front porch, when normally I go outside with cat and bird feed. Son said the ice was over an inch thick when he checked, and not to go out unless I wanted to die. Since I am not yet ready to cross over, I compromised.
Then, I played in Light Room…