Anger over ‘caterwauling’ gulls

Fleetwood-loving seagulls are causing an ‘infestation’ in the port, a resident has claimed.

Glenn Simpson, of Rossall Grange Lane, is now calling on the authorities to address the situation before the main breeding season starts.

Mr Simpson, 50, believes gulls are no longer returning to a nesting site at Walney Island in Cumbria because they have settled into new nesting patterns. He now feels the port is ‘infested’ with them,

Mr Simpson said: “The noise levels of nesting gulls has become diabolical, from spring to autumn.

“With the relocation of gulls to just about every chimney pot in town, it has resulted in a huge colony.

“I am sure every resident can tell their own tales of swooping gulls every time they sit in their garden or even walk down the street as gulls group together to protect their young.

“While I appreciate wildlife and nature for what it is, it does not take an expert to realise the town has a problem.

“Gulls are so content with the situation they are reproducing more and evidence of this is all over the town as, even in winter, dead young gulls are plastered over our roads.

“Has anyone also noticed that as a colony at one side of the town begins caterwauling that the noise spreads from one side of town to the other as other colonies respond?

“The gulls then take to the air and begin swooping and fighting each other. “

The father-of-five says there are other problems created by seagulls including hygiene, noise, disease from dead carcasses, damage to roofs and chimneys and disrupted leisure activities.

He added: “Perhaps an official study could be undertaken to ascertain current population levels.”

The RSPB says two species of gulls are in decline – lesser black-backed gulls are amber-listed and of medium concern but herring gulls are red listed, which is a serious concern.

Chris Collett, from the RSPB, said: “We are concerned about the declines of such species.

“Gulls tend to nest in many coastal towns because they like to nest on flat roofs and there is a lot of food available.

“The best way to discourage gulls is to put up physical barriers on the roofs to stop them nesting – but this must be done before the breeding season.”

The RSPB does not advocate lethal control of gulls unless it is a last resort and complies with all legislation.

Chris added: “Gulls generally only breed once a year although they may lay a second clutch of eggs if the first lot fail.”

A Wyre Council statement said: “While there is nothing to suggest an infestation, seagull nuisance is something the council wants to look at.

“It has to be remembered that large numbers of gulls go hand in hand with living by the sea.

“One of the quickest ways to reduce their presence is to stop leaving waste for them to feed on. Simple actions such as pushing takeaway containers properly into bins, not dropping litter and not putting black sacks out with household bins can all go a long way to help. Householders can take precautions to stop them nesting on rooftops by purchasing spikes.

“One thing the council would like to do is start mapping to see if there are hot spots we need to deal with.”

If anyone has been attacked by a gull or narrowly missed, email mailroom@wyre.gov.uk or call (01253) 891000 to report the exact location.