Someone just recently experienced the "hellion" part of this - but to minimize the risk to whomever is attempting the grab, I thought I'd share this method. MA first shared it with me when Gary and I first started rescuing.
Just thought I'd share this advice again so others needing to grab kittens may do with better chances of not getting clawed and bitten!
|The "Hissy Grab"
To quote Hissy: "I can share with you how I capture feral kitties that come out to eat. I call it the hissy grab and it takes patience and strong arms. But basically once they accept me as being close, I begin to lay down on the ground on my belly next to their dish. This decreases the threat I pose to them by making me on their level. Once they get used to this, I raise my arm up in front of me so it hangs over the dish. Once that is accepted, and the kitten is eating, I swing down quickly grab the scuff, roll over on my back, and get to my feet and put kitty in a carrier nearby. I have caught a lot of babies this way, but the best way to trap them would be if you can get them to go in a carrier and just shut the door- it is less stressful for you. Mom is going to be difficult and probably have to be trapped. Your local animal shelter should have cat traps for rental. You can buy them, but they are spendy.
Just be careful, do your best to keep your face and arms away from the flailing claws and be sure the carrier is close enough that you can get to it easily. You have to be quick and it's best to have protection, because once the scruff of the neck is grabbed that kitten will turn into a hellion with claws. But it can be done."