I received an update from the folks in Greene who are TNRing their cats. "George" was picture-perfect in the pre-baiting stage. They fed him in the trap up until the night before the vet appointment.
George apparently was quickly caught at the appointed time and made it safely to the vet, where it was discovered "Georgie" was in fact "Georgie-Girl." We know how that goes!
Please note the perfect use of two slit pillowcases to cover the trap. This beats the heck of out bundling the trap up in an ungainly sheet (although a sheet is still good if you need to house the cat overnight and want to be sure he/she doesn't pull the cover off). These nice neat covers make things a lot less cumbersome on you, the vet, and don't take up 1/3 of a load of laundry afterward.
...and then moved successfully into the feral cat den I lent them (they already had everything else they needed).
After a week or more of rest in a warm, sheltered, indoor location in her cage, Georgie-Girl will be freed back outside the house, to face a kitten-free spring!
And then it will be Shadow's turn:
Rather than housing and adopting out cats, this is really what I would like to do: Create a spay/neuter fund that would finance spay/neuter for people like this, have an equipment bank to lent traps, cages, and dens to the public, and provide training.
It's just a 501(c)(3) away...
(note: Why not just kill the cats? Ecocatwoman has a great post this morning summarizing why this hasn't worked. And she blogged TWO HOURS before I did this morning. She is far more productive on a Saturday morning than I am!