Hundreds of cats take over island on Niagara River's Tonawanda Island

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Island In Upstate New York Taken Over By Cats

NORTH TONAWANDA, N.Y. (AP) - A small island near Buffalo has a big cat problem thanks to people who have abandoned felines there over the years.

WIVB-TV reports (http://bit.ly/1n6wtNe ) that hundreds of feral and abandoned cats are believed to be on the Niagara River's Tonawanda Island.

Mike Charnock owns a marina and restaurant on the 85-acre island just north of Buffalo. He says the cats are making a mess of the island, and even have gotten onto boats at his marina.

Danielle Coogan has launched Operation Island Cats to stem the growing problem. She's trapping cats and having them spayed or neutered by veterinarians.

In the last 10 days, she has trapped 10 cats. Kittens will be put up for adoptions. Adult cats will be returned to the island.

Hundreds of cats take over island on Niagara River's Tonawanda Island
Niagara River, Eastern Lake Erie (NASA, International Space Station Science, 03/21/07)
Lumbermen Tonawanda Creek 1860'S
Tonawanda Island
TAKEHARA, JAPAN - FEBRUARY 24: A tourist feeds hundreds of rabbits at Okunoshima Island on February 24, 2014 in Takehara, Japan. Okunoshima is a small island located in the Inland Sea of Japan in Hiroshima Prefecture. The Island often called Usagi Jima or 'Rabbit Island' is famous for it's rabbit population that has taken over the island and become a tourist attraction with many people coming to the feed the animals and enjoy the islands tourist facilities which include a resort, six hole golf course and camping grounds. During World War II the island was used as a poison gas facility. From 1929 to 1945, the Japanese Army produced five types of poison gas on Okunoshima Island. The island was so secret that local residents were told to keep away and it was removed from area maps. Today ruins of the old forts and chemical factories can be found all across the island. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
TAKEHARA, JAPAN - FEBRUARY 24: A tourist feeds hundreds of rabbits at Okunoshima Island on February 24, 2014 in Takehara, Japan. Okunoshima is a small island located in the Inland Sea of Japan in Hiroshima Prefecture. The Island often called Usagi Jima or 'Rabbit Island' is famous for it's rabbit population that has taken over the island and become a tourist attraction with many people coming to the feed the animals and enjoy the islands tourist facilities which include a resort, six hole golf course and camping grounds. During World War II the island was used as a poison gas facility. From 1929 to 1945, the Japanese Army produced five types of poison gas on Okunoshima Island. The island was so secret that local residents were told to keep away and it was removed from area maps. Today ruins of the old forts and chemical factories can be found all across the island. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
TAKEHARA, JAPAN - FEBRUARY 24: A tourist feeds rabbits on Okunoshima Island on February 24, 2014 in Takehara, Japan. Okunoshima is a small island located in the Inland Sea of Japan in Hiroshima Prefecture. The Island often called Usagi Jima or 'Rabbit Island' is famous for it's rabbit population that has taken over the island and become a tourist attraction with many people coming to the feed the animals and enjoy the islands tourist facilities which include a resort, six hole golf course and camping grounds. During World War II the island was used as a poison gas facility. From 1929 to 1945, the Japanese Army produced five types of poison gas on Okunoshima Island. The island was so secret that local residents were told to keep away and it was removed from area maps. Today ruins of the old forts and chemical factories can be found all across the island. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
TAKEHARA, JAPAN - FEBRUARY 24: Two tourists sit and feed hundreds of rabbits at Okunoshima Island on February 24, 2014 in Takehara, Japan. Okunoshima is a small island located in the Inland Sea of Japan in Hiroshima Prefecture. The Island often called Usagi Jima or 'Rabbit Island' is famous for it's rabbit population that has taken over the island and become a tourist attraction with many people coming to the feed the animals and enjoy the islands tourist facilities which include a resort, six hole golf course and camping grounds. During World War II the island was used as a poison gas facility. From 1929 to 1945, the Japanese Army produced five types of poison gas on Okunoshima Island. The island was so secret that local residents were told to keep away and it was removed from area maps. Today ruins of the old forts and chemical factories can be found all across the island. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
TAKEHARA, JAPAN - FEBRUARY 24: Two tourist feeds hundreds of rabbits at Okunoshima Island on February 24, 2014 in Takehara, Japan. Okunoshima is a small island located in the Inland Sea of Japan in Hiroshima Prefecture. The Island often called Usagi Jima or 'Rabbit Island' is famous for it's rabbit population that has taken over the island and become a tourist attraction with many people coming to the feed the animals and enjoy the islands tourist facilities which include a resort, six hole golf course and camping grounds. During World War II the island was used as a poison gas facility. From 1929 to 1945, the Japanese Army produced five types of poison gas on Okunoshima Island. The island was so secret that local residents were told to keep away and it was removed from area maps. Today ruins of the old forts and chemical factories can be found all across the island. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
TAKEHARA, JAPAN - FEBRUARY 24: A rabbit waits for food at the beach on Okunoshima Island on February 24, 2014 in Takehara, Japan. Okunoshima is a small island located in the Inland Sea of Japan in Hiroshima Prefecture. The Island often called Usagi Jima or 'Rabbit Island' is famous for it's rabbit population that has taken over the island and become a tourist attraction with many people coming to the feed the animals and enjoy the islands tourist facilities which include a resort, six hole golf course and camping grounds. During World War II the island was used as a poison gas facility. From 1929 to 1945, the Japanese Army produced five types of poison gas on Okunoshima Island. The island was so secret that local residents were told to keep away and it was removed from area maps. Today ruins of the old forts and chemical factories can be found all across the island. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
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