Thursday, July 07, 2011

Seagull Flashback

Recently on the Gurn we highlighted how Iain Bain had denounced a recent Highland Council press release on the seagull problem as a "token gesture", the post including links to research on seagulls migrating to town centres etc, is here. Let us remind ourselves of some of the content of that press release however:

“The campaign to raise awareness of the problem of seagulls nesting in urban areas in the Highlands was first introduced in the Highlands in May 2010 by The Highland Council.”

Really? Did the Highland Council suddenly realise that something had to be done in early in 2010? Now flashback to September 1985 and a Nairnshire article entitled "A gull problem and fouling of public places discussed by committee." Here are some extracts from the article.

"The increase of the gull problem in the town over many years has resulted in more and more problems for the residents, there have been several reports recently of people being attacked by the gulls when they feel their chicks are threatened and their loud cries throughout the night cause considerable disturbance in many parts of the town.

It was obvious, said Environmental Health Chairman Councillor James Campbell the gulls had become increasingly unpopular for some time. But what action, if any could they as a local authority take?'

Mr Cook told members the matter was first brought to their attention a year ago when the course of action decided upon was to offer advice to residents to have nests removed from their rooftops and to make it as difficult as possible for gulls to build a nest in the first place.

Director of Law and Administration Mr Allan Kerr told the meeting that they had no real powers except in two areas - where a health hazard was being created by large amounts of droppings or in respect of amenity such as gulls congregating in the town square. They had no powers to deal with gulls nesting on rooftops or attacking people."

Obviously there was no need for a press release in 1985 as it was all reported in the Nairnshire. Meanwhile back to the future and the campaign to raise awareness (first introduced in May 2010) by Highland Council. Can we anticipate another press release from this campaign in 2037 and lots more talk in between?

1 comment:

I remember that.... said...

That was also the time where they put a loudspeaker up on the top of the Courthouse and a tape would play sounds of seagulls in distress at various intervals. It worked for a couple of times but the seagulls soon got used to it. It proved to be more of a nuisance to high street residents especially when it would go off at 4 o'clock in the morning.