More calls for action on gulls

PROBLEMS with gulls in Montrose have worsened over the last few decades with nothing done to check their migration into town, Montrose Community Council’s chairman has said.

Tommy Stewart again appealed at the committee’s meeting on Thursday for Angus Council to take decisive action to deal with the birds, which many people in the town and district regard as vermin despite their protected status.

Mr Stewart said part of the problem has been storage and disposal of rubbish, which has provided easy pickings for the gulls to scavenge through.

He said: “It was never this bad in the 70s and 80s and Angus Council is burying its head in the sand. It’s because of the way people are with their rubbish that the gulls have now come in to the town.”

The issue was also raised at July’s meeting when Mr Stewart circulated pictures taken around the High Street showing bins belonging to food businesses, full and overflowing with rubbish bags which had been pecked open by gulls. Councillors David May and Bill Gibson said the council has now addressed that particular issue and extra bins have been allocated to those businesses.

Mr Stewart also pointed out that similar problems arise from members of the public feeding the gulls either directly or indirectly, particularly in residential areas which can create issues for neighbours, but Mr Duff said that unless the property is a council house, there is little the local authority can do.

He said: “If it’s a council tenant we can take action, but if not there’s no law against feeding the gulls. We can continue to publicise it and hope that people pay attention, but it’s not actually illegal.”

Councillor May also said the council would continue with its policy of “killing” eggs and removing nests, but Mr Stewart suggested tougher action is required to deal with the problem effectively.

He said: “I’ve been told that Angus Council has measures at its disposal to deal with them as a cull but it doesn’t want to do that.”

Councillor May said he would check the current policy on culling.