After two weeks, several rescue attempts and the worst storm of the winter, Mary Kupa's cat Eva is finally down from its perch in a Fernhill phoenix palm tree.

The 2-year-old cat had been chased up the tree by a stray dog and despite the efforts of the Napier SPCA and the Hastings Fire Brigade, it seemed determined to stay there.

Ms Kupa said every night she had been hearing the cat calling.
"I watched a lot of the tennis on TV, I couldn't sleep," she said.

But yesterday afternoon a saviour turned up, in the form of arborist Justin Jacobs.
"He was working next door and he asked what the scaffolding was around my palm tree.


The neighbours told him it was where people had been trying to get to a stuck cat.
"He came to see me and said 'I'm an arborist and I can get your cat down'. I told him the weather was too awful but he said 'I'll do it right now'. It was fascinating to watch."

Ms Kupa said Mr Jacobs was very brave.

"He was roped up, went right to the top and was like an abseiler with a chainsaw. He was sawing the last of the lower fronds when Eva jumped free."

Mr Jacobs said there was evidence that the cat had been sustaining itself by eating the pigeons that roosted in the palm tree.

Ms Kupa said she was delighted to have her cat back safely.

"She has lost weight, she was never very big to start with. I am feeding her lots of healthy food and plenty of water to rehydrate her. She may need a trip to the vet but for now she mostly wants cuddles."

The tale of Eva the cat had spread far and wide, with Ms Kupa even being interviewed by an Australian radio station.

"Justin is a hero for rescuing her" she said. "And I want to thank all the people who helped and who gave advice."

Ms Kupa said with most of its fronds gone her palm tree now "looks like a pineapple" and she intends to remove it entirely.

"I don't always agree with cutting trees down but this one is on the wrong place."