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Feed the gulls and we'll fine you, says Gloucester City Council

By citizenmike  |  Posted: February 04, 2014

By Mike Wilkinson

8239561

Tougher stance on gulls

Comments (10)

Anti-gull tsars are set to hit the city’s streets fining people who feed the ‘rats on wings’.

Desperate bids to tackle a burgeoning gull population will now resort to penalties of £75 for anyone caught feeding the birds.

City councillor Susan Witts (LD, Elmbridge) said: “The numbers of gulls are increasing and we can’t seem to do anything to contain them.”

Gull expert Julie Wight, environmental health manager, said the biggest deterrent against gulls would be to restrict their food supply on the city’s streets.

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She said: “Any food that a gull can get is a problem.”

A new city centre officer will be tasked with issuing penalties to gull-feeders and new posters saying ‘do not feed the birds’ will go up around the city. The council says it will try to educate people first before fining them.

Councillor Saj Patel, cabinet member for environment, said: “They will have the power to issue fines and they will enforce it.

“It is a problem that needs to be addressed through education. Simply carrying out egg treatments is not enough. The gulls will go wherever there is food so we need to stop their food supply.

“People are feeding the gulls and that is what is attracting them.”

Other councillors at a scrutiny meeting on Monday called for the gulls to be shot. Councillor Gordon Taylor (C, Abbey) said: “We should be lobbying to get a cull put in place.”

Using lasers to scare off the gulls has been ruled out because of health and safety fears. Councillor Janet Lugg, chairman of the overview and scrutiny committee, said: “The last thing we want is a load of blind seagulls flapping around.”

Council bosses said they will look into experimenting with using birds of prey such as falcons in the Docks to ward off the gulls.

Birds of prey are already keeping gulls at bay down at the tip in Hempsted.

Councillor Andrew Gravells (C, Abbey) said: “It is us versus the gulls and the gulls are winning hands down. That’s not a situation I like. These are nothing more than rats on wings.

“You can plaster the city with posters but until people realise that feeding them is wrong you are only scoring a home goal.

“The gulls are terrified at the very sight of a falcon. They make them uncomfortable. This is an option that we should consider.”

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10 comments

  • Douglasknows  |  February 05 2014, 11:42AM

    Oiling eggs is a stupid waste of money. Gulls live for years and following them round year after year to find their nests is ridiculous. Shooting them with a high powered air rifle is the best answer.

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  • Beegeeuk  |  February 05 2014, 11:24AM

    Shoot the bloody things!! They're just vermin and that goes for pigeons as well!!!

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  • Glos_Lad34  |  February 05 2014, 8:43AM

    @RoadWombat, I agree with that and the customers of takeaways dropping chips etc on the floor so the gulls eat them.

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  • RoadWombat  |  February 05 2014, 12:11AM

    Poor old citon! Anyway, for the rest of us, back in the real world..... I wonder if the fines will extend to the suppliers of much of the food - namely the takeaways and their customers?

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  • jackson99  |  February 04 2014, 8:56PM

    Well there ias one thing that brings Gulls to Gloucester and that is the big landfill site at Hempstead. Of course the Council always seem to think it something else thats attacts them. Maybe we should build a Incerarator and burn our rubbish. Or would It annoy the good folk of Stroud who are worried that it might be a bit near them.

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  • jackson99  |  February 04 2014, 8:55PM

    Well there ias one thing that brings Gulls to Gloucester and that is the big landfill site at Hempstead. Of course the Council always seem to think it something thats attacts them. Maybe we should build a Incerarator and burn our rubbish. Or would It annoy the good folk of Stroud who are worried that it might be a bit near them.

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  • honslknjklyt  |  February 04 2014, 4:18PM

    I would rather feed a nice gull who adds beauty to the town than a selfish junkie who would skin a gnat if they thought there was money in it. Man is such a greedy selfish species, its answer is to cull everything, yet it is US who is causing the imbalance of nature. Cull the badgers, cull the deer, cull the pigs, cull the gulls, We would be better off if we could cull the murderers, rapists, child abusers, animal totrurers and so on.

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  • citon  |  February 04 2014, 3:07PM

    No, I would not harm any living creature, not even gun toting thugs and I despise those who think they have a right to destroy anything they don't like. Learn to live in harmony with nature, not destroy it. Humans spread disease, are very agressive particularly to the defenceless and need sensible practices to control their love of killing.

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  • mikehibby  |  February 04 2014, 2:44PM

    Seriously? You can't possible class them as part of our diverse population, that's ridiculous. If you had an infestation of rats you'd expect to be able to cull them, and gulls are no different. They spread disease, are aggressive and need sensible animal husbandry tactics to manage them. Get a grip.

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  • citon  |  February 04 2014, 2:09PM

    "Councillor Gordon Taylor (C, Abbey) said: "We should be lobbying to get a cull put in place." - - That is another good reason that I will not be voting Conservative again. Why oh WHY do some people think that the answer to everything is to kill thousands of innocent creatures? First the badgers, now they want to murder (note he uses the sanitised "cull") the seagulls that are part of our City's diverse population. By all means, try to prevent them multiplying by reducing their food supply etc, but never ever try to justify harming them, just because you don't like them, any more than we would harm savages like him.

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