As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Wednesday, 25 September 2019

How do you solve a problem like the seagulls?

By Giancarlo Rinaldi South Scotland reporter, BBC Scotland news website

16 September 2019

The nuisance and mess caused by urban seagulls has been well documented.

Among their most recent targets were Scottish Championship football club Queen of the South, who issued a plea to fans not to feed the birds in a bid to tackle the problem.

But how did we get here and what can you do if, like the Dumfries team, you are having a bit of bother with the birds?

According to the RSPB, herring and lesser black-backed gulls using rooftops for nesting goes back as far as the 1940s.

Why they left their traditional seaside environment is less clear but abundant inland sources of food and safe, predator-free nesting sites on rooftops were "definite factors".

An increasingly "throw-away" society gave the gulls greater access to food sources, helping populations to grow.

And there, said RSPB Scotland, lies the most straightforward solution to tackling the problem.

"The most effective measure to discourage seagulls nesting in urban areas is to reduce access to food and the attractiveness of nest-sites," explained a spokeswoman.


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