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Firms asked to help stop Cheltenham seagulls

By Gloucestershire Echo  |  Posted: December 22, 2012

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PRIVATE landlords and the owners of large buildings should help the borough council deal with Cheltenham's seagull problem.

That's the view of Councillor Barbara Driver (Lansdown, C) who this week took part in a workshop held at the Municipal Offices to assess the issues caused by the urban birds.

Some areas of Cheltenham such as Lansdown, have been afflicted in recent years by the noisy and aggressive creatures, which have damaged the outside of the town's iconic regency buildings.

The borough council already spends thousands of pounds each year oiling eggs, which sterilises them, to try and keep the gull population under control. But the authority can only do so much on its own, according to Mrs Driver.

She said: "Last year was particularly bad and I believe the fairly wet spring didn't help.

"We have been oiling the eggs but that is not the best method.

"Replacement eggs are the best but that costs a lot more so really for the money the council can afford and can spend, oiling is probably the best option.

"I think the public protection team is doing a good job but the big thing that really needs to happen is for the businesses and private flats to help us out.

"It is not just about the council but the council can advise them on what they can do. We are all in this together – the council cannot do it all.

"The council is limited on the properties it can treat because some properties won't let them in for whatever reason."

Herring and lesser black-backed gulls move to cities and towns because of the abundant food supply and the safety from predators.

Egg oiling costs Cheltenham Borough Council almost £4,000 each year.

Cheltenham Borough Council is in the process of exploring the possibility of working with business and resident groups to help them protect their own properties from the birds.

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