Many of you will have seen the disturbing story in the news recently of the seagull that swooped down and snatched poor Chihuahua, Gizmo from his Devon garden. This has posed the question as to whether seagulls are becoming more aggressive and what can be done to stop them. It has also caused some alarm among people that fear a potential seagull attack on them, their children or their pets.
At Falcon Environmental Services we have spoken to many concerned people that have a tale to tell about a seagull attack. The trouble is that a seagull attack, while scary and aggressive, is not so common. However, these creatures can be a nuisance and they can be aggressive so we thought we should share some advice about what to do if you feel threatened.
If you are at risk of being attacked by a seagull, you will know about it. They make warning noises to indicate that they are not happy.
On the first warning, the seagull may just swoop at you but if you stand your ground, it is likely to fly at you again and could well hurt you with its feet. In this instance, raise your arms to protect your head.
Don’t wave your arms or try and shoo it away. You will just provoke and intensify its agitation. If you are going to raise them it should be to protect yourself.
Umbrellas are a good line of defence – If you have one on you then you may be wise to use it. A hat is also a good way to stop your head from getting hurt.
If you are eating, you may want to consider where you are eating. Sitting on the beach wall surrounded by gulls is asking for trouble. Keep your food covered and close to you. Eat inside or out of harm’s way if you can.
Covered bins are the best. Many fast-food restaurants that have a drive-through have open bins with gulls just waiting for you to dispose of your leftovers. If you own a cafe or a restaurant or a fish & chip shop, be sensible and dispose of your rubbish wisely. Consider the kind of bins that you are providing.
If you have gulls that have taken up residence on your property then do the right thing and get it dealt with. Bird spikes, netting, falconry and mesh are all good preventative measures that stop the birds from roosting and nesting.
You may have heard Matthew’s interview on Radio Devon this week. if you did then you will know that Matt and the team are well versed and experienced when it comes to nuisance birds and how to prevent them from setting up home on your premises. If you have any concerns or would like further advice, or if you have a seagull problem, we will be only too happy to help. Call us on 01752 929292.