The Cats of Aoshima   2 comments

A fishing village on the tiny Japanese island of Aoshima, which is located in Miyazaki province, off the southern coast of Japan has something of a problem and it has to be said that it’s really self-inflicted!

Years ago the fishermen and women of Aoshima used to complain about mice, they were over run by the pests, so quite reasonably they decided to introduce the most effective but humane, or should that be feline, solution.

Plague of Mice

Cats are good at controlling mice and soon the ‘mouse problem’ was completely under control. But before we say well done to the heroic felines, we have to remember one thing and that is Cats do happen to be good at ‘other’ things, unless they are subject to some form of control themselves and in the case of the Cats of Aoshima that control should have been, ‘birth control!’

Cats

Sadly for the Cats as much as for the inhabitants of Aoshima the fishing industry in the area has declined and many of the people who looked after the Cats have left. over 70 years ago there were 900 people on the island, now that number has reduced to a mere 20!

Cats 2

As the humans sailed away the Cats left behind turned to the wild and today there are over 120 feral cats, outnumbering the humans left behind by six to one.

The sheer number of Cats on an island that could accurately be described in size as ‘modest,’ would be a problem in itself. That problem is amplified by the fact that there are so few people who are around to feed the Cats these days after they were so enthusiastically introduced years ago. And of course as Cats will do they have eaten all the mice and most of the other wildlife available.

Happily for the Cats of Aoshima they have allies. Hundreds if not thousands of people visit the island from the mainland these days just to see the Cats, these tourists apparently find over a hundred rather boisterous, if not pushy, Cats calming and bring them food.

Whether the tourists own Cats at home is debatable because the diet of the of the feral Cats now consists mainly of rice balls, energy bars or potatoes. “Energy Bars?” Yes I thought that was rather odd too!

Cats 3

And as you can see these Cats rather like the camera and aren’t afraid of having their pictures taken. Mind you I don’t think these Cats are afraid of anything!

Apparently and rather belatedly, efforts are now being made to cull the feline population, roughly 10 animals have recently been spayed, but progress is slow.

This Cat finds this sort of disastrous human induced situation not a surprise because humans are really terrible at playing with nature… aren’t you?


About the Author

The Cat Portrait2

The Cat is one of the most successful feline authors in the history of Catkind. His sharp elegant wit has produced the bestselling book ‘Getting Out – Excerpts from a Cat’s Diary’ and of course the much plagiarised gag of the same name which appears on all of the funniest joke sites on the internet.

Copies of the Cat’s masterpiece of feline literature ‘Getting Out – Excerpts from a Cat’s Diary’ and his latest wonderful book ‘The Cat’s Travelogue’ can be purchased at a bookstore near you or from the internet at Amazon.com and here for the Travelogue The Cat’s Travelogue Paperback Edition or at what The Cat calls his www – wickedly wonderful website here www.thecatsdiary.com where you can not only learn more about me the genius Cat but also play my games they are all paw picked by me and have been described as “exactly what free on-line games should be, fun, free and fantastic.”

I would like to tell you all about something new and rather nice that you can get from the Apple iBooks store, no not ‘Getting Out – Excerpts from a Cat’s Diary’ and his latest wonderful book you have been able to get that for ages, no something else rather wonderful. You can get John Woodcock’s brilliantly illustrated book the first in the series called ‘The Trams of Prague’

This heavily illustrated books created especially for iPads, Pods and Phones called Tram No 6 is the Naughtiest of Trams and it looks amazing.

If you would like to get this exceptional book the easy way, just click on this link:
Trams of Prague – Tram No6 is the Naughtiest of Trams


Don’t forget dear cuddly readers one and all that my translator’s heavily illustrated book has just been made available at the iBookstore or iTunes – what was it with Steve Jobs and all of the ‘i’s’?

To get whizzed straight to the store whatever it’s called just click on the picture of the cover of that wonderful book below.

Trams of Prague ePub Cover 2 1 13 225x225 75

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2 responses to “The Cats of Aoshima

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  1. That is so sad. I wish I could rescue them all, they look friendly and I bet a lot would be happy in homes.

    • Thanks for your comment it is so true. Unfortunately most second and third generation feral Cats wouldn’t want to live in a home they tend to get used to life outside. Though my Cat Bumper (that is what he was hit by I believed when I rescued him from the pavement in a London street lived contentedly in my house (almost never going out) for 10 years after he was released from the Vets where he stayed for several months healing a compound fracture of the right femur, poor lad had a metal rod holding the bone together and protruding out of his skin for ages before the bone healed properly.

      Bumper was the biggest and nicest Cat I have ever known and never any trouble. He used to sit on my desk and snooze while I wrote or illustrated, occasionally waking up and still lying down knock a pencil or a rubber off the desk to demonstrate that he was awake and needed a pat or a Prawn.

      Incidentally I read somewhere feral Cats that were once domesticated but who have become feral are responsible for the decline of wonderful truly wild Cats such as the wonderful Scottish Wild Cat and the European Wild Cat, by interbreeding with them which obviously threatens the wild population’s distinctiveness.

      Let’s hope that the tourists continue to feed the lovely Cats of Aoshima, though it would be great if someone showed them where to by Cat food!

      Purrs,

      The Cat

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