The Duncan Banner

Community News Network

December 27, 2013

The purrfect island cat paradise

(Continued)

OZU, Japan —

Since then, the Ozu city government's Nagahama branch has received phone calls from those who are eager to visit the island.

In October on a ferry, I saw eight visitors, including a woman on a solo trip and a couple. They spent their day on the island photographing or feeding the cats.

Kafumi Munehira, 50, from Mihara, had spent the night in the city of Ozu to catch a ferry at the Iyo-Nagahama Port the following morning to Aoshima. She stayed on the island for nine hours until the evening.

"I'm overwhelmed by how many cats there are! There are nothing but cats here, and I don't mind that at all," she said.

Sayumi Nagamori, 23, from Sanuki, said, "I can observe their natural life here."

Ferry capt. Nobuyuki Ninomiya said, "I seldom carried tourists before, but now I carry tourists every week, even though the only thing we have to offer is cats."

Yuji Tsuzuki, 41, of the branch's regional promotion division, said he'd like to organize tourism with cats as a theme if the number of tourists continues increasing, but he hopes the tourists will show basic manners such as not feeding the cats too much or leaving garbage.

"Cat islands" exist in and outside Japan, helping to boost regional tourism. Tashirojima island in Ishinomaki is home to 86 people and about 100 cats. Fishermen there regard cats as the gods of a good catch, and there's even a cat shrine.

On the island of Malta, cats, which were aboard a ship to ward off rats, began breeding, and currently there are about 800,000 cats — double the population of islanders. Every year, about 20,000 Japanese visit the Mediterranean island, many of whom are said to visit to see the cats. The Malta tourism office in Japan hands visitors a ballpoint pen designed with Hello Kitty in an Order of Malta costume.

On the island, visitors can feed cats within a conservation area managed by a volunteer group.

Text Only
Community News Network
  • An alarming threat to airlines that no one's talking about

    It's been an abysmal year for the flying public. Planes have crashed in bad weather, disappeared over the Indian Ocean and tragically crossed paths with anti-aircraft missiles over Ukraine.

    July 30, 2014

  • Sharknado.jpg Sharknado 2 set to attack viewers tonight

    In the face of another "Sharknado" TV movie (the even-more-inane "Sharknado 2: The Second One," premiering Wednesday night on Syfy), there isn't much for a critic to say except to echo what the characters themselves so frequently scream when confronted by a great white shark spinning toward them in a funnel cloud:
    "LOOK OUT!!"

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • 20140729-AMX-GIVHAN292.jpg Spanx stretches into new territory with jeans, but promised magic is elusive

    The Spanx empire of stomach-flattening, thigh-slimming, jiggle-reducing foundation garments has expanded to include what the brand promises is the mother of all body-shaping miracles: Spanx jeans.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Medical marijuana opponents' most powerful argument is at odds with a mountain of research

    Opponents of marijuana legalization are rapidly losing the battle for hearts and minds. Simply put, the public understands that however you measure the consequences of marijuana use, the drug is significantly less harmful to users and society than tobacco or alcohol.

    July 29, 2014

  • linda-ronstadt.jpg Obama had crush on First Lady of Rock

    Linda Ronstadt remained composed as she walked up to claim her National Medal of Arts at a White House ceremony Monday afternoon.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Can black women have it all?

    In a powerful new essay for the National Journal, my friend Michel Martin makes a compelling case for why we need to continue the having-it-all conversation.

    July 29, 2014

  • Dangerous Darkies Logo.png Redskins not the only nickname to cause a stir

    Daniel Snyder has come under fire for refusing to change the mascot of his NFL team, the Washington Redskins. The Redskins, however, are far from being the only controversial mascot in sports history.  Here is a sampling of athletic teams from all areas of the sports world that were outside the norm.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • 'Rebel' mascot rising from the dead

    Students and alumni from a Richmond, Va.-area high school are seeking to revive the school's historic mascot, a Confederate soldier known as the "Rebel Man," spurring debate about the appropriateness of public school connections to the Civil War and its icons.

    July 28, 2014

  • How spy agencies keep their 'toys' from law enforcement

    A little over a decade ago, federal prosecutors used keystroke logging software to steal the encryption password of an alleged New Jersey mobster, Nicodemo Scarfo Jr., so they could get evidence from his computer to be used at his trial.

    July 25, 2014

  • Russia's war on McDonald's takes aim at the Filet-o-Fish

    Russia said earlier this week that it had no intention of answering Western sanctions by making it harder for Western companies to conduct business in Russia.
    But all bets are off, apparently, when you threaten the Russian waistline.

    July 25, 2014

Poll

Should the date for The World's Largest Garage Sale be changed from the third weekend in July to sometime in October to take advantage of cooler weather like we had this past weekend?

No. It's better in the summer cause kids are out of school.
Yes. More shoppers would come during nice fall weather.
Either time is fine.

     View Results
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.