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Surely we can control gulls?

PUBLISHED: 11:17 30 October 2009 | UPDATED: 15:00 06 July 2010

HAVING made regular summer visits to Lowestoft for the past 35 years, I have seen how the seagull problem has escalated year after year.

The noise problem from herring gulls, almost the size of geese, standing on chimney pots and squawking down them from 3am to 7am is acute, and a health problem when sleep is disrupted for night after night.

HAVING made regular summer visits to Lowestoft for the past 35 years, I have seen how the seagull problem has escalated year after year.

The noise problem from herring gulls, almost the size of geese, standing on chimney pots and squawking down them from 3am to 7am is acute, and a health problem when sleep is disrupted for night after night.

I have read how the gull population has been going down, although more gulls are nesting on the roofs of seaside towns.

However, gulls had a population explosion from the 1930's through to the 1970's due to the enormous increase in food that they had access to from landfill sites, rubbish dumps and fishing waste, and with modern practices reducing this food bonanza for them, there might have been a reduction in numbers from this artificially inflated population, but they are resourceful birds and hardly a species at risk.

Like all other wild birds, gulls are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, making it an offence to intentionally injure or kill any gull, or take, damage, or destroy an active nest or its contents. They are, however, on a list of mammals and birds which can be killed if they represent a health and safety risk. This is open to interpretation but I would think that when an abundant bird is making the lives of the human inhabitants of a town miserable the case for some measure of control should be an obvious priority.

C J ELLIS

Milton Road East

Lowestoft

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