Plan to use birds of prey to stop seagull attacks in Carlisle
Last updated at 11:52, Tuesday, 22 February 2011
Hawks or falcons could be drafted in to get rid of nuisance seagulls in Carlisle.
The city council says it has received complaints about aggressive birds swooping to attack pedestrians during the nesting/breeding season from May to August.
The problem is so bad that Angela Culleton, the council’s assistant director – local environment, has drawn up a report for the environment scrutiny panel, which meets on Thursday.
It says: “The majority of the complaints are related to industrial estates although some concern the city centre.
“More and more seagulls are moving into built-up areas to nest.
“The main reason is that food sources are readily available from people deliberately feeding them and the amount of takeaways and other food refuse strewn around roads and back streets.
“Kingstown industrial estate often experiences problems due to its gently-sloping roofs and its close proximity to Hespin Wood landfill site.”
As well as swooping on pedestrians, the gulls are noisy and their nests can block gutters and gas flues, potentially with fatal consequences if fumes cannot escape. The gulls can also damage buildings by pecking at roof materials.
As a last resort, Mrs Culleton says, the council could employ “disturbance techniques”.
She argues that the use of loud bangs to frighten off the birds is inappropriate in the city centre.
Birds of prey might be deployed, however. Her report adds: “The use of a hawk or falcon could be considered but if this method is used the birds of prey must be flown at least daily over a prolonged period.”
Companies at Kingstown paid for a hawk to be brought in when they suffered a spate of attacks last May while McVitie’s uses birds of prey to keep seagulls off its factory in Caldewgate.
First published at 11:42, Tuesday, 22 February 2011
Published by http://www.newsandstar.co.uk
Have your say
Seagulls = feathered rats, vermin. Cull the vermin, a cheap way is to pay a small bounty per dead bird. Get rid of the seagulls and let the native species back.
Loud bangs are inappropriate in the heart of the city? Tell that to Edinburgh and their 1 o'clock gun !
Sounds like a good idea to me.
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