Originally Posted by jcribbs
The babies are just slightly [I think] over three months old. Is that too young to fix?
Ooops - I remembered I forgot to answer this. It is definitely NOT too young to fix! It is safe to spay/neuter as early as seven weeks. Many vets (if they're not regularly involved with ferals) won't due it because they don't know the research on it and haven't spayed or neutered a cat that small, but here's a link: http://www.winnfelinehealth.org/repo...ly-neuter.html
Most organizations that provide low-cost spay neuter services will already know this and be willing to spay/neuter the younger kittens.
And as to the questions - stray or feral - sometimes it can be really hard to tell! A feral that's never had a bad experience with a human can get friendly pretty quickly (though that's not the norm). Trusting a human can take forever with a housecat that was abused by humans. Strays can become "feral-like" pretty quickly. Here is a really well written article by someone who's worked with ferals for a long time: The Many Differences Between Feral and Tame Cats
Interestingly, none of our ferals talked. Lazlo was the exception, but he was the first one we rescued and that was because he was abandoned by the family on their first excursion, and he cried up a strom. But once inside, the only time he would ever "talk" was a meals. And that was just a quiet meow or two. But no one else ever talked. Until Flowerbelle. She was rescued at a very early age as a teeney, teeney kitten, and she's deaf. But she's not mute. And her mom probably never taught her not to talk - don't think she was with mom long enough. And she talked any time she wanted (or didn't want, lol) something. THANKFULLY it's the cutest little chirping kind of thing.
However - once she started talking, after about a month or so, one of the other cats started talking when he wanted something. It was the rustiest "I've never used my voice before" kind of sound, lol! I don't know how long it took, but eventually, of course, they all started talking. Not a lot - but something every day. So now instead of the quiet peaceful home we had, we've got six talking cats.