Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Stunning Photos of Switzerland’s 'Ghost Cats' (via Atlas Obscura)

Atlas Obscura 29 November 2016: "A hoarse, yelping bark rang out from the wooded hillside. Then again. The unearthly calls, sounding somewhere between fox and cat, continued in a steady sequence, carrying through the forest’s mossy tree trunks and damp leaf litter, growing louder as they approached. Then, abruptly, the woods fell silent.

'I knew he must be close when the call stopped,' explains French wildlife photographer Laurent Geslin, recounting the moment in January 2011 when he first laid eyes on a wild Eurasian lynx. “I knew that he must have seen me.” Geslin, who has spent the past six years pursuing this elusive beast through Switzerland’s Jura Mountains, was confident that the cat, though shy, would be curious. All he had to do was keep quiet and watch.

'I checked every tree and every branch,' Geslin recalls. 'And then I checked again.' He explains how a lynx’s lightly marked grey-brown coat blends so perfectly into the dappled backdrop of rock, leaf and shadow that it can disappear in plain view. This time, however, his..." read on

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Two-Faced Cats: How Do They Get That Way? (via National Geographic)

Last weekend, during the charity event of one of the cat sanctuaries in Malta, we were talking about the Janus Cat and investigated about this genetic mutation. Here's a nice article on National Geographic from 2 years ago about the subject:

"The famous two-faced cat, Frank and Louie (sometimes called Frankenlouie), passed away this week at the ripe old age of 15. The Massachusetts feline held the Guinness Book of World Records title for the longest lived Janus cat.

Named for the Roman god Janus, who was usually portrayed as having two faces, domestic cats with two faces are extremely rare, noted Leslie Lyons of the University of Missouri's Department of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery, who specializes in feline genetics. (Related: "R.I.P. Duecy: The Kitten With Two Faces.")

The animals also generally don't live very long due to health problems related to their deformity—making Frank and Louie's 15-year run that much more impressive, Lyons said.

The cause of Janus cats isn't completely understood, but "we know there's a variety of genetic mechanisms that could cause it," Lyons said. Only DNA testing can pinpoint the exact cause..." read on.

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

One Year Later: Cat Worker Antonella in Malta

Malta, in November 2016: One of the foremost task on receiving the newly published hardcover version of our book 'Islands of Cats' was to present each of the featured, steadfast, stray cat carers with a copy.

The smile that Antonella beamed as we handed her the book, told us more than words how much she appreciated our work. As she browsed through the pages, Antonella told us that there was still a dire situation with stray cats, and how she hoped our book would help to bring more attention to the matter.

Antonella with Author Alexander Johnson
Antonella made us feel, that the work we had invested in the book had not been in vain. Thank you for your devotion to the needy animals in Malta.

You can read about Antonella's amazing work and her network of volunteers in 'Islands of Cats' on pages 68-69. The book tells the story of a representative 22 of over 1,000 stray cat carers in Malta and Gozo on 128 pages, illustrated by over 250 colourful photographs - accompanied by cat facts, stories, interviews, and it introduces places of interest on the Islands. 'Islands of Cats' is available in English, Maltese and German, as well as E-Books including Kindle. And most of all, we donate part of the proceeds of each book sold in aid of neutering and spaying of stray and abandoned cats in the Maltese Islands. Click here to order your copy, and please tell your friends.

Monday, 14 November 2016

The Colourful Hardcover Print of 'Islands of Cats' is OUT NOW

Good News! Last Friday we held the print version of 'Islands of Cats' for the first time in our hands and were able to pick up the long awaited books in all 3 languages: English, German and Maltese.

A first snapshot of the three language versions
250+ colourful photographs on 128 pages talk about a representative 22 of more than 1,000 carers of stray and abandoned cats in Malta and Gozo and their admirable work. Also, read about places of interest close to these individual's locations, interviews with specialists, cat facts and more.

You can order your personal copy - which makes a nice Christmas present, too - in your preferred language through our web site, and we will ship it to you straight from the heart of the Mediterranean (exception customers with a delivery address in Malta or Gozo):

Delivery to Malta & Gozo

Delivery World-Wide

High-resolution PDF E-Books


Aiming at anybody who cares for animals, author Alexander Johnson explains: "There seems to be an affinity between a part of the Maltese population and the Islands’ feline citizens. These individuals who see to the cats’ needs, the importance of which is underrated, are called: carers or feeders. In our quest to find out more about these mostly shy and reserved caregivers, Gabriele and I met carers from all walks of life - housewives, business persons, room maids and doctors, Maltese, Gozitans, and foreigners - people who give up part of their daily lives to be dedicated and loyal knight-errants, sustaining and protecting their own ‘islands of cats’. And by having this fertile species neutered and spayed, keep the cat population at bay."

Author Alexander Johnson at the stand of BDL Books during the Malta Book Festival 2016.