What do you see in this picture?
The larger version reveals a great deal more, of course, but perhaps you need a different view. How about this one?
Again, the larger version shows details hidden in this reduced image, yet I think I’ve made myself clear.
Ants. The enemy of all that is good and wholesome, the devil incarnate, that which is evil and vile, and mortal enemies of my very life.
What are they doing, you ask? Let me tell you.
They’re chowing down on the cat food I leave outside each day for the various neighborhood cats. That’s right, poppets. These wingless wasps are spitting in my eye with their invasion of my space. They’re laughing at me. Can’t you hear them?
A touch of Sevin dust will undoubtedly mire them in death’s throws whilst protecting the kitty kibble I make available each day. Building a protective barrier from the toxin rests high on my list of things to do—when it stops raining so much, I mean.
Until then, the cats have to fend for themselves when it comes to competing for this food.
But something else not shown in these photos helped me realize the horrible crap I’ve been feeding to The Kids.
Yes, I know it’s prescription cat food. I assure you, the cost I pay for it reminds me of that fact each and every time I have to refill the cupboards.
Yet I still know it’s crap and it’s very much time to come up with a different answer to their dietary needs.
What you don’t see in the photo is precisely what I showed you a short while ago: isopods!
I’ve watched with a careful eye precisely what the roly-polies are doing in the midst of the ant invasion. It’s not the ants they’re attracted to.
It’s the cat food!
And let me tell you why that’s so disheartening, so disgusting, and so revealing as to be the final nail in the coffin of commercial cat food… at least when it comes to The Kids.
Pill bugs, as they’re known, are detritivores. What are detritivores?
Just as carnivores are meat eaters and herbivores are plant eaters and omnivores eat everything in sight, detritivores eat detritus. That is to say, they eat decaying plant or animal material.
As a whole, detritivores are useful. They aid in breaking down a great deal of biological material that would otherwise stay around far longer than we’d appreciate.
When it comes to cat food, however, the apparent interest of isopods shines a light on something that is troubling insomuch as it concerns felines. Who are predators. Carnivores.
Isopods feed almost entirely on dead or dying plant matter.
So tell me again why they find cat food so interesting? Food intended to satiate the dietary needs and hunger of meat-eating cats?
Huh? Can anyone tell me?
I mean, I’ve watched the little wood lice as they munch away on food intended for cats.
Am I the only one who finds it troubling that crustaceans who survive on decaying vegetation want to consume food meant for carnivores? And that they congregate in large numbers to do just that?
I’m sorry. Prescription food or not, I’m offended to discover this little secret of commercial cat food. It’s garbage, something not meant for felines.
So I’m now on a serious quest to resolve this issue by finding a new food for The Kids that is organic, healthy, full of the meat and related substances they require, and still able to address the medical issue the current food is intended to fix.
Meanwhile, I’m utterly disgusted by this discovery. It reveals a great deal about what we feed our animals. It shows me I’m giving The Kids something they shouldn’t be eating.
As for the ants… Rest assured they’ll get theirs. Soon.
[I’m not sure what species of ant you see in these pictures; I wish I knew, but there are so many different kinds and sizes around here, not to mention in general, that it’s rather difficult for me to properly name the interlopers; at least for now…]