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Tuesday, 4 December, 2001, 09:51 GMT
Purr-fect ending for stowaway cat
Map
A stowaway New Zealand cat that wandered onto a ship bound for South Korea has been reunited with its owners after a three-week voyage.

The cat ended up at the southern Korean port of Yeosu, where one of its carers collected it and flew it home.


We'll have to give her a talking to

James McPherson
The drama started when the cat, which lives at a dock in the city of New Plymouth, followed a sailor onto a South Korean methanol tanker - the Tomiwaka - looking for food.

When dock workers at Port Taranaki found out what had happened they launched a frantic international effort to get the cat back.

Sea-farer

They tried to organise a ship-to-ship transfer but that idea was abandoned because no ships were on a convenient route. So James McPherson travelled to Yeosu to collect the cat - named "Colin's" after the dock worker who adopted her nine years ago.

"Many people have been involved in getting Colins back to New Zealand and we're very grateful for that," he told South Korean television.

He thanked the crew of the Tomiwaka for looking after the cat, and to quarantine officers for speeding up its return.

The Korean crew had kept in touch with Port Taranaki, the west coast of North Island, by sending photos showing the cat apparently looking contented.

But Mr McPherson said he was delighted to have the cat back. She has "kept us company for many a long night," he said.

"We'll have to give her a talking to - not to talk to any strange men," he said.

See also:

28 Nov 01 | Asia-Pacific
Stowaway cat is all at sea
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