You are absolutely right of course. I didn't go into all the details because my story already seemed long enough!
Well some of those cats, I did manage to catch with just a regular cat carrier trapping method similar to what catsnatcher described. The ones in the trap, yes, sedation was possible through the bars. Although that was not so easy either.
My goal every day was to try and trap more than one at a time and I only had one live trap. This helped me with the vet costs if I could bring more than one in at a time (and the time I was able to devote to this, as my daughter was just 2yrs old at the time). Lot's of back and forth to the farm resetting empty traps (thanks to the raccoons!), lying in wait for an hour, leaving, coming back a few hours later and on and on until it was done) I would lie in wait for hours sometimes. There were days of no success. This whole process (including catching all the kittens) took about two weeks.
This was seperate of finding homes for the kittens of course (out of the 50+ kittens, I only managed to place 4 locally, the rest, I found homes in Toronto with help from friends. A few people also helped with the vet costs).
The few cats I caught in the carrier were the ones that had already made some progress towards trusting me enough to let me be close by while the checked out the food in the carrier. Then I would sneak up & close the door. Sounds awful and I felt terrible, but the alternative was worse. I was under a lot of pressure to succeed.
But the cats were really upset and on the other end at the vets office. Pulling the cat out of the carrier was how the vet tech got hurt. Of course his rough macho attitude didn't help…
Those were the first attempts. We all did get better at it as we went along.
By the way, a few things more. I had the best success with sardines as bait; also the best time to catch the cats was night time. Often the cats would be in the trap in the morning having gone in sometime through the night when the farm was quiet and everyone was asleep.
CATSNATCHER; I am so impressed with your experience with over 50 cats!!! What a lot of hard work and dedication. You are amazing!