Old Kid On The Block: The Urban Gull Menace

While gulls are not new to Britain’s shores, their numbers have soared in urban areas over the past 50 years. The threat of physical attack along with the mess and noise they produce has prompted people to try all they can to repel these winged invaders. But as efforts at curbing gulls have failed, these gulls are becoming more aggressive and their urban population continues to soar.

Aerial assaults from gulls demonstrate their aggression towards people or animals who invade their space, particularly when they are defending their young. A woman in south west England suffered deep beak wounds to the top of her head when a gull attacked her and a family’s pet dog was pecked to death.

Other complaints include gulls defecating on cars and pedestrians and people being kept awake by the noisy birds. Workmen are being harassed while working on rooftops and young birds are dropping into people’s gardens. With so many gulls living alongside humans, is it any wonder that the two come into occasional conflict.

Human actions contribute to the inland migration of gulls, as the sea’s fish stocks become depleted and popular clifftop breeding sites are allocated to coastal developments. Urban sites offer ready food sources and comfortable sites for nesting such as flat rooftops.


Under the 1981 Wildlife and Countryside Act, all wild birds are protected and once they have begun nesting it is illegal to disturb nests or remove eggs. There are exceptions and companies such as http://www.vvenv.co.uk/ can assist you in bird and pest control and ensure the gulls are dealt with effectively and legally.

Bird and Pest Control

Professional nuisance bird management companies are experienced in gull mitigation and will ensure the best techniques are employed such as housekeeping changes, gull proofing, audio gull distress calls and falconry response in order to rid your property of gulls. They will also remove empty nests for you.

In order to reduce the population of gulls in urban areas it is important to educate the public about ways to make their towns and cities less attractive to the gulls, such as keeping litter secure and not feeding the birds in the first place. Culling has been suggested but there is no proof that this would work. Further research is required.

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