Nuisance seagulls could be shot
HUNDREDS of seagulls could be shot to stop them causing havoc in a seaside town.Flocks of seagulls perched on houses along the promenade in Aldeburgh could be culled and visitors asked not to feed any of the birds to lessen the disruption they cause.
By Richard Smith
HUNDREDS of seagulls could be shot to stop them causing havoc in a seaside town.
Flocks of seagulls perched on houses along the promenade in Aldeburgh could be culled and visitors asked not to feed any of the birds to lessen the disruption they cause.
Aldeburgh Town Council is considering a range of options after councillors and residents became worried about the damage they were inflicting.
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They are often feeding off titbits from families using the town's famous fish and chips and other takeaways.
Their cacophony of noise keeps hotel guests awake at night and they leave their droppings over cars and garden furniture.
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The tall buildings and parapets found in Aldeburgh give gulls safety from predators and they are good places for them to raise their young.
Bill Richardson, chairman of the town's planning committee, said: ''I propose to write to the district council that any new buildings in Aldeburgh, in order to qualify for approval, must ensure that any chimneys that are built on this side of the hill are fitted with wire netting to stop seagulls nesting in them.
''We have had two broods of seagulls this year due to the unseasonal weather patterns and the way that seagulls work is that the fledgling will come back to nest where they were born.
''So if we do not cover up the opportunities of nesting on buildings we will no doubt always have this problem.''
The town council has been told by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs that it is possible to cull herring gulls and greater and lesser black backed gulls under a general licence.
Marianne Fellowes, chairman of the town's appearance committee, said Suffolk Coastal Services had been asked to quote for culling some of the seagulls.
''But many people have said they do not think this is a safe and efficient practice. We will look at different options to discourage people feeding the seagulls - people sit at Crag Path and feed them.
''We will ask fish and chip shop owners to have signs saying 'please do not feed the seagulls' and we will include other takeaways.''
Meanwhile in Bristol where there is a serious seagull problem the city council has decided to save £25,000 from its annual budget by sacrificing the snacks from all meetings and it will spend the money on dipping seagull eggs in oil so they do not hatch.