Problems with Seagulls
Urban-nesting in Britain started in the 1940’s, however it became established as a national phenomenon in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. Since then, numbers have grown exponentially, driven by ample food, high breeding success and limitless habitat.
Many of our cities and towns throughout Britain and Ireland now support growing colonies, it was estimated in 2004 that the total population of roof-nesting urban gulls exceeded 120,000 pairs. The urban breeding population in the Severn Estuary Region has increased from an estimated 2,600 pairs in 1994 to 23,900 pairs in 2004. Further increases on this scale would see the population of more than one million pairs of urban-nesting seagulls.
Common gull problems include:
- Noise – Gull noise can be irritating and deafening especially during nesting season (March to September)
- Rooftop nesting – Gull nesting debris can block downpipes and guttering as well as attracting parasites and nuisance insects
- Gull menace – Gulls can often attack people during nesting season to protect their nests. Seagulls are known to swoop at people to steal food
- Gull fouling – Seagull guano is not only unsightly but a potential health risk especially near ventilation systems and rooftop plant machinery
- Vehicle or building damage caused by acidic nature of seagull guano
- Increased building maintenance and cleaning costs