20 Adorable New Photos from Japan’s Cat Heaven Island

If you haven’t yet heard about Japan’s Cat Heaven Island, then let us introduce you.

Meet Tashirojima, a Japanese island nicknamed “Cat Heaven,” that sits in the Pacific Ocean off the Oshika Peninsula.

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The island’s small fishing community numbers just 100 people, but its feline population is booming. Cats were originally brought in to help deter mice from destroying silkworm farms. But when this industry left, a good portion of Tashirojima’s human population did too, but the kitties didn’t. They stayed behind and multiplied, enjoying all the extra space.

Most of the cats are semi-feral, so they’ll happily accept both petting and food. Locals care for them as it’s believed the felines will bring good luck and prosperity to the community. According to the Daily Mail, fishermen also believe the cats can “help predict weather patterns.”

Photographer Fubirai has spent the last five years visiting the island and capturing the peaceful lives of Tashirojima’s friendly felines. Take a look at some of his recent shots below, and be sure to check out tons more on his blog right here.

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Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

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Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven IslandCat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

Cat Heaven Island

All images: Fubirai