On Tuesday night in the Community Centre the West CC set out their stall at the head of a campaign for action on seagulls, particularly the more aggressive ones that have been recently asserting themselves in the town centre. Rosemary Young told the meeting:
“There’s been a big push from a lot people coming to me saying it’s gone beyond a joke in this town and we must do some sort of culling next spring, legally or whatever.”
Rosemary then produced a document containing information on the protected status of the Herring Gull or more specifically the lack of it, the document was headed “Scottish Natural Heritage General Licence 03/2012.” Rosemary continued:
”I don’t want to appear like a sort of mad murderer but I witnessed a young woman with her small child just by the Regal being attacked by a seagull. The child was being attacked in fact. She was beating it off and I stopped the car to help her. The seagulls have become a nuisance, there was another woman trying to get into her car. She had two seagulls on her car. She couldn’t get in, they were attacking her. There’s been three or four incidents of people reporting to me similar incidents.
I we hadn’t had a wet summer we would be knee deep in seagull doobs because at one point the whole place was white and people were walking into shops, guests were coming back and saying ‘we’ve got to take our shoes off before we come in the house because they are covered in seagulls muck. I’m not saying you have to get rid of every seagull off the face of this earth but they have become beyond a joke in this town. They are now nesting and sitting in grass and that’s never the thing for Herring Gulls to do.”
Michael Green said he and his fellow councillors had spent a lot of time discussing the problem. He said according to information from studies in
Dumfries it seemed that removal of nests was the most effective policy. He
told those present: “There have been discussions, I don’t want to pre-judge our
final discussions. We’re looking to put in place a range of measures to help or
educate but what I would say is that next year Nairn will be a lot more seagull
unfriendly than it is now.”
To this observer the reality of the situation is that there should have been action on removing nests should at least 20 years ago. It is left to today's councillors to do something at a time when local government funds are evaporating. Some householders and property owners will continue to remove nests where they can or can afford to have someone else to do it. Others may not be so willing so it will be down to the Council in many instances, that will mean manpower and costs. Can suffiicent funds be found in 2013 to disprupt Salty's nesting season?