Crime among the island’s gulls appear to have escalated after a feathered fiend turned its attention to wallets.

It seems food is no longer such a lucrative venture after Northern Neighbourhood Policing team posted the latest nefarious act by the seabirds.

Posting on Facebook, officers explained how a youngster retrieved a wallet on Thursday after watching a gull drop it – no doubt realising it could not be eaten - while shopping with his mum in Ramsey. It is unclear how the gull got hold of it in the first place.

In a light-hearted post the force said: ‘Can you let Jake Kinrade know the seagull has reported him to Trading Standards: it’s not the burger he thought it was.

‘And special thanks to the eagle-eyed youngster who saw it fall from the sky, even if his mum didn’t believe him at first cos she was busy with the shopping  wrestling a defiant trolley.’

It is the second time this week police have posted about antisocial gulls.

The Eastern Neighbourhood Policing team posted details, only half in jest, of an incident involving an Australian race fan who was the victim of an aerial attack.

This wallet was pinched by a gull in Ramsey
This wallet was pinched by a gull in Ramsey (IoM Constabulary)

The Aussie visitor named Michael was swooped on by a scavenging herring gull which made off with the top of his sausage roll. Police said Michael stopped an officer on foot patrol in Strand Street on Wednesday to report the theft.

The Eastern NPT post reads: ‘He was very upset and it took a while for him to calm down to fully explain his gripe.

‘Having purchased a rather nice looking sausage roll he then encountered a Manx seagull which swiftly swooped down and ate the top off it without even a “hey boy”.’

Joking aside, gulls have been resorting to scavenging on the likes of chips and ice cream due to loss of natural spaces and depleting fish stocks. This has led to many seaside towns warning people not to feed the gulls.

Scientists say what's thought of as nuisance behaviour is actually a sign of the gulls’ smartness and social learning skills. They may appear to be everywhere but gulls are actually a protected species due to dwindling numbers.