Is it time for seagull cull?

snack time: A seagull stops for food in Peel

snack time: A seagull stops for food in Peel

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PEEL Commissioners are to hold talks on what action they will be taking over the growing problems with seagulls in the town.

It has got so bad that some residents and visitors have had seagulls pinching food out of their hands.

Peel Commissioners have received complaints about seagulls swooping and attacking people and particularly targeting those on the promenade eating ice creams or sandwiches.

They made an application to enable steps to be taken to remove seagulls from their own property.

The commissioners have received a letter from the government’s biodiversity officer, Richard Selman, who has stated that there is a general licence for public health and safety issues.

Town clerk Peter Leadley said: ‘It will be discussed in next week’s commissioners’ meeting. It is a matter for them to consider if they want to go through with it and what action will be taken.’

Joanne Lace, of Shamyr Hey tea rooms in Michael Street, Peel, has said that seagulls have been a problem for a number of years, but they have become bolder and more of a problem recently.

To tackle the problem of one persistent seagull, Joanne applied to the Department of Environment Food and Agriculture for a licence and was granted a licence to dispose of one of the birds.

She said: ‘I’m worried about the danger. It is frightening. This seagull is not small. We don’t want to be mean or cruel to the seagulls but what can you do? I don’t know what the answer is apart from a cull.

‘It is upsetting not only for visitors but locals alike. I have an outside seating area and sometimes they even come down under the umbrellas, trying to take food from customers.

‘We tell our customers to be careful but they come down from nowhere. Some people won’t sit outside to have their food because they don’t want the seagulls to spoil their lunch.’

Mrs Lace said she was hoping that if the Peel Commissioners were granted a licence they would deal with the seagull problems in the area.

If she were to use her own licence, she would have to pay the bill from the pest control. Mrs Lace said: ‘If the commissioners get their licence, hopefully they will deal with the problem. I don’t think I should pay the bill.’

Mr Leadley appealed to the public not to feed the seagulls and to try to keep litter in wheelie-bins, where possible.

There are signs on the promenade asking the public not to feed the birds.

The issue will be discussed on Tuesday, September 6, in the Peel Commissioners’ meeting.

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