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Tashiro, or Cat Island

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In the Pacific Ocean is located Taciro, or Cat Island, which is part of the Japanese city of Ishinomaki. This island received its second name thanks to homeless cats living on it, which today number more than the local population of about 100 people. Residents feed these animals because they believe that it will bring them wealth and good luck.
Tashiro, or Cat Island

In the past, the inhabitants of the island bred silkworms for the production of silk. And so that the mice - the natural predators of the silkworm - were not divorced too much because of the abundance of food, people began to contain cats, which in turn did not allow the population of rodents to grow.
Tashiro, or Cat Island

After the Edo period (1603–1868), fishing became popular on Tashiro, and people who came there to go fishing often stayed on the island for the night.
Tashiro, or Cat Island

Attracted by the smell of fish, local cats went into hotels where the fishermen rested and “begged” for food from them. And thanks to thatthat people constantly fed cats, on the island of these animals became even more than it was, and the fishermen, who loved cats, began to interpret their behavior as a prediction of the weather or the degree of success of the upcoming fishing.
Tashiro, or Cat Island

According to local legend, once, when fishermen were collecting stones, necessary for fixing fishing nets, they accidentally hit a cat with one stone, after which it died. Out of pity for the animal that had become almost sacred to fishermen, people buried a cat with honors in the middle of the island, where a cat sanctuary was later built. He, as well as ten more sacred places scattered around the island of these animals, can be seen today.
Tashiro, or Cat Island

Also on Tashiro are 51 sculptures in the form of cats.
Tashiro, or Cat Island

Most of the people and cats on the island survived the tsunami that hit Japan in March 2011.
Tashiro, or Cat Island

Currently, 83% of the island’s population are elderly. Residents of Tashiro are mainly engaged in fishing, as well as renting accommodation to visitors. Very often on the island are held photo contests and exhibitions devoted to cats.
Tashiro, or Cat Island

Thanks to the press and Internet blogs, the public learned about a unique place, after which tourists and cat lovers from all over Japan began visiting the island.By drawing attention to Tashiro in this way, the locals hope to save the island from desolation.

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