Promoting observation, free range exploration, sense of place and citizen science, through the field notes of a naturalist.

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Reduces anti-social behaviour

 Gull with part eaten apple 

Gull with tennis ball  

Gull with child's slipper

'Give them something to do' is often the response of the general public to instances of anti-social behaviour amongst the youth. The assumption being that if youngsters are free from boredom they'll be less inclined to drink under age and go snogging in parks. The same could be said of those other urban anti-socials, the gulls. A spate of ice cream pinching and dustbin raiding is enough to tie up the resources of the local Wildlife Crime Officer for months. In an effort to keep gulls occupied and away from jumping on parked cars in supermarkets residents throughout Gwent are being encouraged to throw all unwanted small items into the River Usk Special Area of Conservation (SAC). The idea is that these then become exposed at low tide and washed back up on the incoming tide offering gulls endless hours of boredom busting fun. Early indications from a pilot study in Newport suggest reported cases of dive bombing gulls are down. Mrs Jones of Seagull View has greeted this news with cautious optimism, she said. 'These birds were landing on my chimney pot and calling loudly, things got so bad we had to install CCTV and go ex- directory, Dai at number 19 was even considering vigilante action. But the 'Give it to the Gulls initiative does seem to be working'. These sentiments were echoed by Mr.Bright a local lighting engineer who had seen a corresponding reduction in gulls hanging about on roadside lighting columns and swooping to take morsels of food ejected by legitimate road users.

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