Town council to research gull diet

A hungry gull
A hungry gull

The town council is hoping that educating people about the dietary needs of gulls will help stop them attacking people in their quest for food.

For years there have been complaints about gulls creating litter problems by digging rubbish out of bins and ripping bags open.

In the last couple of years these have been exacerbated by reports that the birds have become more aggressive in their hunt for food and started attacking people as they eat.

Notices asking people, particularly tourists, not to encourage the gulls by feeding them the likes of fish and chips and sausage rolls have not really proved effective.

So Whitby Town Council is looking at a different approach.

It is now researching the different types of gulls that can be found in and around Whitby and what their specific dietary requirements are.

The information will be put on noticeboards in some of the worst areas for people eating takeaways and feeding the gulls such as Dock End, the bandstand and Church Street car park.

Town clerk, Pam Dobson said: “It is a slightly different approach.

“We want to get information about the kind of seagulls that live in the Whitby.

“There will be different species with some pictures so kids can identify what kind of gull they are and what they should eat and try and get the message out that it is not good for them to eat chips, basically and that they are damaging their health.”

The town council is now in talks with the RSPB about the type of information that should be included on the boards and is looking into how much putting them up is going to cost before reporting back to members.