Seagull population in Worcester is dropping

Worcester News: SCAVENGING: A seagull raiding a bin in Worcester for food. SCAVENGING: A seagull raiding a bin in Worcester for food.

THE seagull population in Worcester has fallen, but tourism chiefs say more needs to be done to rid the city of the menace.

Worcester Tourism Association says firms are approaching them about the birds which are widely disliked because of their constant screeching, scavenging of food and even attacks on people.

But the man in charge of reducing their numbers says nesting pairs in the city have fallen from 400 in 2006 to fewer than 300 today as new ways are found to control them.

Worcester City Council budgets between £5,000 and £8,000 per year to deal with the problem.

“Businesses, including hotels and shops, are coming to us about the problem, particularly in the Broad Street area,” said Tourism Association secretary Jo Rammell.

“Some say they watch the seagulls lying in wait for their food.

“One shop owner has watched one swoop down and grab food from someone’s hand.”

She said the presence of seagulls was a “recurring comment” by those visiting the city.

But Andy Staples, of Red Kite Pest Control which has treated the seagulls on behalf of the council since 2006, says new techniques to stem numbers are working.

“The last two years certainly it has gone down,” said Mr Staples. “I’m hoping for the same this year.

“We use dummy eggs now to control numbers.

“I oiled them at first which stops them hatching.

“Now I use sand-filled plastic eggs in their place.”

He said seagulls pair for life but this scheme tricks the birds into wasting their time with the fake eggs, preventing a new generation of the gulls.

Councillor Roger Knight, who fought to keep numbers down during his role as cabinet member for the cleaner and greener city portfolio, believes the work to reduce numbers is worthwhile.

“It’s good news,” he said.

“If we could address the problem of people dropping food on the pavement and in parks then it would also help keep numbers down. The less food that’s discarded the better for Worcester.”

In the past few weeks, Cheltenham Borough Council has started its annual egg oiling programme to help control the town’s urban gull population.

Herefordshire Council, meanwhile, has appointed a specialist contractor to carry out humane nest and egg clearances until August.

Comments (8)

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8:47am Thu 27 Jun 13

Flash-man says...

Without a doubt, seagulls are the greatest menace facing Worcester today.

I run a business near Worcester, and I can no longer do my job. Everyone wants to talk about seagulls. It never stops. Seagulls, seagulls seagulls. Thats all I hear !

When I think of worcester, I don't think of crazy traffic congestion and expensive, poorly provided parking. I don't think of empty shops and expensive business rates. I don't think of the recession killing livelihoods.........
all I ever think about is seagulls !

Maybe we can call the army in ? To combat this 'menace' ?

Without a doubt, legions of tourists are being kept away from the city by these gangs of seagulls. Myself, I am far too scared to come into the city now. Their screeching terrifies me. And their flapping wings. ****.....their flapping wings scare me.

Flap, flap, flap.

Please council, save us from the menace of the seagulls.

Signed.
A. Seagull.
Without a doubt, seagulls are the greatest menace facing Worcester today. I run a business near Worcester, and I can no longer do my job. Everyone wants to talk about seagulls. It never stops. Seagulls, seagulls seagulls. Thats all I hear ! When I think of worcester, I don't think of crazy traffic congestion and expensive, poorly provided parking. I don't think of empty shops and expensive business rates. I don't think of the recession killing livelihoods......... all I ever think about is seagulls ! Maybe we can call the army in ? To combat this 'menace' ? Without a doubt, legions of tourists are being kept away from the city by these gangs of seagulls. Myself, I am far too scared to come into the city now. Their screeching terrifies me. And their flapping wings. ****.....their flapping wings scare me. Flap, flap, flap. Please council, save us from the menace of the seagulls. Signed. A. Seagull. Flash-man
  • Score: 0

9:35am Thu 27 Jun 13

sugarlump says...

the seagulls in Worcester are dropping - some just missed my head as I was walking through near Foregate St Station!!
the seagulls in Worcester are dropping - some just missed my head as I was walking through near Foregate St Station!! sugarlump
  • Score: 0

10:54am Thu 27 Jun 13

Hwicce says...

The photo shows a perfect example of why we have so many seagulls.

Overfilling a bin, or not getting it collected often enough just encourages them. If everyone made a bit more effort to clean up the food waste we wouldn't have them in the first place.
The photo shows a perfect example of why we have so many seagulls. Overfilling a bin, or not getting it collected often enough just encourages them. If everyone made a bit more effort to clean up the food waste we wouldn't have them in the first place. Hwicce
  • Score: 0

11:41am Thu 27 Jun 13

nobby7 says...

I thought all the seagulls flew upside down in worcester as theirs nothing worth crapping on.
I thought all the seagulls flew upside down in worcester as theirs nothing worth crapping on. nobby7
  • Score: 0

12:02pm Thu 27 Jun 13

mauro balbino says...

Broadstreet by the HSBC, yesterday between 15:30 and 16:00...
Yes, yes, tangential hit promptly sorted.

The place is all crapped by Jonathan Livingston's less-perfect companions.
Broadstreet by the HSBC, yesterday between 15:30 and 16:00... Yes, yes, tangential hit promptly sorted. The place is all crapped by Jonathan Livingston's less-perfect companions. mauro balbino
  • Score: 0

1:21pm Thu 27 Jun 13

CharlieAlpha says...

Doesnt help with take aways throwing scraps out into the street when closing which encourages them to hang around.
Doesnt help with take aways throwing scraps out into the street when closing which encourages them to hang around. CharlieAlpha
  • Score: 0

5:41pm Thu 27 Jun 13

blueworcs says...

I don't know what the Seagulls eat In the area of the Blackpole Industrial Estate but, judging by the state of my car, they need some more fibre In their diet........
I don't know what the Seagulls eat In the area of the Blackpole Industrial Estate but, judging by the state of my car, they need some more fibre In their diet........ blueworcs
  • Score: 0

8:29pm Thu 27 Jun 13

RogerLFC says...

Those bins in that picture are not just ajar by a couple of inches. They are seriously over capacity and encouraging the gulls and also probably foxes at night. These bin owners need to sort themselves out or be sorted out by The Council. No point speaking to a seagull as it won't be listening.
Those bins in that picture are not just ajar by a couple of inches. They are seriously over capacity and encouraging the gulls and also probably foxes at night. These bin owners need to sort themselves out or be sorted out by The Council. No point speaking to a seagull as it won't be listening. RogerLFC
  • Score: 0

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