The Discovery-Times Channel premiered a new program on the New York subway last night, called "New York Underground". One of the short segments was about a cat that lives in the Fulton St. BMT station, and a pair of women that leave food and water for it every day. There was much debate among subway riders and MTA staff as to whether or not the cat exists, or it it's just a large rodent. The cat does exist, and they showed her picture (a small-medium gray tabby) at the end of the show. The text of the story is at http://www.utu.org/worksite/detail news.cfm?ArticleID=3100. The original N.Y. Times story is also available online, but access requires a paid subscription. Also, the archived Times story doesn't contain the photo, which can only be seen for free in the television program.

What's amazing to me is how clean the cat was, even though the area below the platform is amazing grimy, mostly from subway brake dust. That she regularly ingests a non-trivial amount of steel and asbestos-like fiber dust and keeps on ticking is also a quite a comment on feline sturdiness.

Then again, there was also a mature Bengal tiger living, apparently quite happily, in a Harlem public housing unit (along with an alligator, a family of three, and a paying boarder) for a number of years. Story at http://www.nydailynews.com/front/story/124124p-111407c.html. Go figure!
I am surprised the ASPCA has not rescued this cat by now. As for the tiger, I am not sure it was too happy living in that apartment.

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The cat has resisted attempts to be handled in any way. She likes to perch on the running rails next to the platform, so she has to duck an incoming train every six to ten minutes. I think a critter that can dodge a J train can escape all but the most determined captor. The BMT tunnels are the second-oldest in New York, and present unfathomably many places to hide.
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Unfortunately, I'm sure her luck will run out sooner or later. Poor little thing, what a dreadful life. At least she's being fed but it sounds horrendous for a cat to live that way.
Candace
(take the litter out before replying by e-mail)
See my cats:

"One does not meet oneself until one catches the reflection from an eye other than human." (Loren Eisely)
<< The cat has resisted attempts to be handled in any way. She likes to perch on the running rails ... a dreadful life. At least she's being fed but it sounds horrendous for a cat to live that way. Candace[/nq]
Yet the cat could go up the stairs and out any time it wants.
Slightly off topic, but I think may be of interest to some of you in reference to this kitty who lives in the subway I recommend reading The Mole People: Life in the Tunnels Beneath New York City by Jennifer Toth. A real eye-opening book for me.
Joe
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I wonder if it knows that...
Candace
(take the litter out before replying by e-mail)
See my cats:

"One does not meet oneself until one catches the reflection from an eye other than human." (Loren Eisely)
> I wonder if it knows that...

I was wondering about that also. Maybe it's too afraid of all the people around to check out the stairs? But it must wander around during the off hours. One thing for sure. It won't starve to death. Plenty of small rodents running around the tracks. They scurry away when the trains come also.