Increase In Urban Gulls

Experts say urban gulls are becoming a big problem across the South West.

Full report: the rise of the urban seagull

Some of them dive down and steal your fish and chips - others rip rubbish bags to shreds leaving the contents to spill out over the road. Seagulls can be a menace, and the urban seagull is on the rise.

So much so that one of the region's MPs has called a 'seagull summit' to look at what needs to be done to tackle the problem. Watch Tanya Mercer's report here.

Urban seagulls: Viewers comments

We asked our viewers what they think of seagulls on our Facebook page. Here are some of their responses.

My Mother feeds a local Seagull - he sits on the roof opposite her house and waits for his food - she calls him Burt burt and he has been visiting and eating for a couple of years."

– Jan Howard

I was at the Cathedral Green in Exeter a while back and one swooped down and took a sandwich out of a child's hand."

– Lynn Rockcliffe

We have plenty in Shirehampton. In the winter they perch themselves on the chimney pots and central healing vents to keep warm."

– Jerry Morris

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Urban seagulls - friend of fiend?

Urban seagulls are becoming an increasing problem across the South West. Local MP Don Foster has recently called on a 'seagull summit' to discuss the problems caused by these feathered creatures.

It's estimates that there are 5,000 of them in Bristol and 6,000 in Gloucester. Experts say more research needs to be done on why these gulls thrive in urban communities.

The number of seagulls in urban communities is on the rise Credit: Peter Rock
Experts say more needs to be done to curb the problem Credit: Peter Rock

Don Foster MP hopes research into seagulls will help curb the 'growing problem'

For far too long we have been unable to find a solution to curb the growing problem of urban seagulls. In Bath and other areas people are being terrorised by these birds and the current control methods are simply not working.

The problems are getting worse, and unless we understand what it is that makes the gulls so successful we will make no progress. Hopefully, by bringing interested councils and businesses in to fund research we will be able to find a lasting solution that can be used countrywide”

– Don Foster, MP for Bath

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MP for Bath chairs 'seagull summit' in Parliament

The MP for Bath hosted a 'seagull summit in Parliament today to discuss the problems being caused by urban seagulls. Peter Rock, an expert from Bristol University, highlighted noise and damage to properties as just some of the problems being faced by communities.

He also estimated that there are more than 100,000 seagulls and the numbers are increasing rapidly. Mr Rock believes the current techniques in bringing down numbers are having little effect.

The meeting concluded that there was an urgent need for research into what makes the urban gull so successful. A further meeting will be organised for the near future.