When dealing with feral cats you have two mentalities. On one side you have the folks who are animal lovers and who do not want to see any animal starve. On the other side those who would rather see them used as a rug or door mat. Here is my opinion on feral cats and how to feed your own personal cats without starting a feral colony. First you need to keep in mind that feral cat are wild animals. They do not have vaccinations and are not fixed 99% of the time. If they are fixed, the clinics will tip the ears of feral cats to you can tell if they are fixed.
When someone openly feeds a feral cat population it gives the animals the ability to breed at a breathtaking rate and before you know it your have dozens if not hundreds of cats in a single season. This is not Natural. The only reason this is happening is because they have a large food source. In the wild the cats would have to be further apart geographically so that they would have enough land to hunt the food in order to survive. Openly feeding feral cats short circuits the natural form of birth control.
Now what to do if you have domesticated outside cats. Its pretty simple. You will put a limited amount of food out each morning and evening. Your cats will learn the schedule. The wild cats will realize that the food supply is gone and will move on to another area.
I do not wish to see any animal starve, but by openly feeding feral cats you are actually increasing the number of cats that either starve to death or are killed by predators. Speaking of predators, by having a large feral cat population you increase the chance of catching the attention of a bobcat or something bigger.
As always I hope this information is helpful.
Bob Matthews-All American Dogs