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New approach to tackle problem of bird population in the city
FRESH attempts are being made to crack down on Worcester’s seagull population – with a map being produced to pinpoint where they exist.
Councillor Simon Cronin, who is leading an in-house review of the city centre, says a detailed map outlining their favourite locations and habitats will help tackle the “menace”.
Despite the overall number of nesting pairs in Worcester falling by 100 to about300 since 2006, the gulls are still plaguing the city.
The idea is that a map could help shape future city council policy in discouraging them to help reduce the numbers further.
The council says it could use it to make each location “less impressive” in a bid to warn them away from it.
It follows conversations with independent seagull experts last year, who said Worcester’s architecture may be a reason why they tend to flock to the Faithful City.
Coun Cronin said: “What we’re after is a detailed map so we can see where the gulls are and where they tend to concentrate.
“We’ve had numerous conversations about the gulls because they are something which regularly fill the in-boxes of councillors.”
Andy Stapes, from Red Kite Pest Control, based in Alfrick, near Malvern, has been working with the council to try and tackle it.
He believes the nooks and crannies in Worcester’s buildings and the proliferation of white surfaces attract them in, as well as the river.
Gulls are known to be fond of architecture which reminds them of cliffs, which is why Cheltenham and Gloucester get large numbers.
Red Kite has also been planting fake eggs on buildings in recent years, a move which has helped reduce the city’s population.
A meeting later this month between Red Kite and the council, will reveal the map.
Coun Cronin said: “We’ve got to identify where the seagulls are concentrated, not only to inform our policy, but begin to tackle the problem properly.
“I accept they can fly for miles but it has to be the way we look at it.
“We need to make a serious impact, because people still don’t think enough is being done.”
Councillor Roger Knight, Worcester’s former environmental chief, said he believes the onus is on people to stop littering.
He said: “They seem to like the habitat, and they are very clever birds.
“Personally, my view is that people will have to change their behaviour patterns.”
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