Wild Animals Are Figuring Out City Life
Animals are evolving to live in cities. They can change their behavior and biology to thrive in a place meant for humans.LEARN MORE
On the surface, these places are animal sanctuaries. But overpopulation of any animal, no matter how adorable, takes a toll.
Rabbit Island, Fox Village, cat islands (yes, there are multiple) — Japan has plenty of places completely overrun by cute animals.
These places have started attracting tourists. Some even charge for admission.
Take Fox Village, where you pay an entrance fee and can buy food to feed the foxes yourself.
Or there's Okunoshima, nicknamed "Rabbit Island" for the approximately 1,000 fluffy creatures that live there. A resort on the island advertises, "You can play with literally hundreds of wild rabbits."
Sounds like a dream, right?
Overpopulation can seriously harm an ecosystem. When predator populations like cats and foxes increase, the birds and other small prey they eat are overhunted.
The Japanese government is trying to humanely control feral populations — 140 animal hospitals are working to domesticate feral cats, rather than killing them as many places around the world do.
Do you think these animal havens are worth the risks of overpopulation? Tell us on our social platforms.
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