Place the trap in the area where you typically feed the cats. Do not place a trap out in the open; place under shrubs, small trees, corners of buildings, etc.
Check with neighbors to see if there are other people feeding. If so, ask them to discontinue until TNR is finished or put traps at their feeding station.
Secure the trap door open with wire, string or a stick. Place a thin layer of newspaper on the bottom. If it gets wet or blows, you can leave the bottom bare. Plan to use the trap as a feeding station 3-4 days in advance of your surgery date. This helps the cats get accustomed to entering the trap and not to be afraid. It is NOT recommended to use plastic bowls or plates as they can block the door when trapping. You can use a paper plate.
Start with placing food at the front of the trap on the first day and move the food toward the back of the trap each feeding afterward. You are training the cat not to be afraid to go all the way into the trap the day/evening of trapping.
24 hours BEFORE ( or 1 feeding before) the day/evening of trapping, a light meal. If they are used to being fed and now are hungry, it will increase the success of catching them. Kittens weighing 2-3 lbs will trip the plate; can be trapped, fixed and eartipped.