A feral cat is typically born in the wild or outdoors with little to no human interaction. If you attempt to get too close or try to pet them, they will hiss and/or run away. Feral cats are born from other ferals or from stray cats. What is the difference between the two? Well, a stray cat was once a pet cat, until it was either lost or was abandoned by its owner. While they struggle to survive in their new outdoor environment, some strays become fearful of people, even adopting feral behaviors after a period of time, depending on their surroundings. However, most stray cats remember that humans feed them and try to stay near homes, carports, and other areas where people concentrate.
Animal behavior experts note that feral and free-ranging (outdoor) cats will hunt and kill even if well fed, and that can make them a major threat to native wildlife. Unlike wild predators that switch to other prey or locations when food becomes scarce, domestic cats that are fed can afford to continue to hunt and kill prey even when prey populations decline.